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Google’s apps work differently on iOS 15

Google's apps work differently on iOS 15

Many of Google’s key apps work a little differently on Apple’s iOS 15. These are the changes you need to know about.

Apple’s iOS 15 and iPadOS 15 started rolling out this week, and they come with a feature called Focus Mode.

This is a new OS-level option designed to remove distractions by restricting certain types of messages while the option is active.

Focus mode replaces Do Not Disturb, which blocked all notifications no matter what they were or who they were from.

It is not ideal in all cases. You may be driving and want to remove distractions while receiving important Google Maps messages.


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It would not have been possible before without a significant amount of manual adjustments.

Focus function lets users specify the times they do not want to be disturbed, based on set periods such as sleep time or work time.

Users can select which contacts or apps are allowed to trigger notifications when Focus mode is active.

For example, a loved one can still send a message when everyone else’s messages are blocked.

Google has updated its apps to behave differently when focus mode is active. This is important to be aware of if you were an avid user of Do Not Disturb mode.


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In addition, Google’s apps have new widgets and allow for a new way to find content in Apple’s Spotlight search.

Learn more about Google’s iOS 15 updates.

Google’s Focus Mode iOS Apps

Google has updated several of its apps to work with Focus mode and make announcements as relevant and timely as possible.

“If you, for example. Navigating a place with Google Maps, we still let you know when you need to turn or if there are changes to your route – e.g. Roadblocks or unexpected traffic. The focus function does not mute these useful timely reminders.

Similarly, the Google Home app notifies you if there is an unknown face at your door. And if you set a reminder in Google Tasks that is associated with a specific time, e.g. “Take the cupcakes out of the oven at 11:45”, we let you know. “

Google not-so-urgent messages go to the iOS Notification Center, where users can check them when it’s convenient.

These updates will be rolled out in the coming weeks across apps like Gmail, Meet, Tasks, Maps, Home and many other Google apps.

Larger widgets on iPad OS 15

Apple’s latest update to the iPad operating system allows users to place widgets on the home screen, just as they can on iPhones.

Google is taking advantage of this by introducing larger widgets for the iPad.

In the coming weeks, Google Photos and YouTube Music will be launching extra large versions of their popular widgets, so you can easily access some of your best memories and favorite music on your iPad home screen.


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Search YouTube in iOS

Google makes it possible to search for songs in YouTube Music using Apple’s Spotlight search.

From today, if you search for a song in Spotlight, you can start playing it directly in YouTube Music.

Google did not suggest that anything will come in the future, but this really shows what it can do with iOS when Apple lets it.

Any future integrations with Spotlight search will definitely depend on Apple’s approval.


Featured Image: Screenshot from, September 2021.

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