Google has released an official Gmail application for the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad providing a native Gmail experience on the iOS platform. Google has had an HTML 5 mobile web app for some time that provided an iOS enhanced experience via the Safari browser, however it suffered from the same limitations as other web applications in its inability to provide notifications and limited offline access. The new official Gmail application is designed to be fast and efficient and provides full native access to Gmail including notifications for new messages, support for threaded conversations, archiving, labelling, starring, deleting and reporting spam.
The app also includes support for Gmail Priority Inbox, auto-completion of names from Google or iOS Contacts and Gmail search. Users can also send photos as attachments from directly within the app. The iPad version also provides a standard split-screen view and the application takes advantage of touch gestures such as pull down refresh and viewing labels by swiping right.
Gmail is a universal app requiring iOS 4.0 or later and is available from the App Store as a free download.
Update: Google has removed the app from the App Store, indicating in its blog that “it contained a bug which broke notifications and caused users to see an error message when first opening the app.” The post goes onto indicate that the company is working to release an updated version soon which fixes the bug and that users who have already installed the app can continue to use it..