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Gmail for iOS gets a major update but users are not happy

Users bemoan performance and battery drain issues
Thu Mar 06 2014, 09:49

INTERNET GIANT Google has released a major update for its Gmail app for iOS that finally brings background refresh to the email client, but its users are not happy about it.

Google announced the update on Wednesday, revealing that Gmail for the iPhone and iPad now boasts a background refresh feature, which means emails will be "pre-fetched" and ready to view when you open the app. 

Google software engineer Melissa Dominguez said in a blog post yesterday, "Whether you're checking your email first thing in the morning or as you're waiting in line at the grocery store, you want to get your messages as quickly as possible. With today's update to the Gmail iOS App, it's easier to do just that."

This new feature requires iOS 7, and users will also need to have "background app refresh" switched on. However, some might not want to bother, as users of the update app have been quick to bemoan it over on the app store, with some saying that it is hurting their battery life.

One unhappy Gmail user said, "This update included background app refreshing and it killed my battery life very quickly. The rest of the app is still good, but I had to turn off the background refresh for my battery's sake."

The Gmail for iOS update also brings with it support for signing in across multiple Gmail iOS apps and services.

"The Gmail app also now supports sign-in across Google iOS apps, including Maps, Drive, Youtube and Chrome," Google explained. "Sign in to one, and you'll be signed in to all (this also works for signing out). So you won't have to type in that 27-character password or retrieve your 2-step verification code every time you navigate to another Google app."

However, users aren't too happy about this either, and some claim that the feature isn't working.

"Since I've updated the app it's no longer logging me in and it's a lot slower than before the update," one miffed user wrote.

Gmail for iOS is available to download for free from the iTunes Store. µ


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