1. SEJ
  2.  ⋅ 
  3. SEO

Google’s Apps Work Different on iOS 15

Google updates its mobile apps to take advantage of new capabilities in iOS 15.


Many of Google’s key apps work slightly different 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 a new OS-level setting that’s designed to eliminate distractions by restricting certain types of notifications while the setting is active.

Focus Mode replaces Do Not Disturb, which blocked all notifications regardless of what they were or who they were from.

That’s not ideal in all cases. Perhaps you’re driving and want to eliminate distractions while being able to receive important Google Maps notifications.

That wouldn’t have been possible before without a significant amount of manual setting adjustments.

Focus Mode lets users indicate the times they do not want to be disturbed, based on set periods like sleep time or work time.

Users can choose which contacts or apps are allows to trigger notifications when Focus Mode is active.

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

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

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

Here’s more about Google’s iOS 15 updates.

Google’s iOS Apps on Focus Mode

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

“For example, if you’re navigating somewhere with Google Maps, we’ll still let you know when you need to make a turn or if there are changes to your route — like road closures or unexpected traffic. Focus mode won’t silence these helpful, timely reminders.

Similarly, the Google Home app will let you know if there’s an unfamiliar face at your door. And if you set a reminder in Google Tasks that’s linked to a specific time, like “take the cupcakes out of the oven at 11:45,” we’ll be sure to notify you.”

Google notifications that aren’t as urgent will go to the iOS Notifications Center, where users can check them when it’s convenient.

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

Bigger 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 bigger widgets for iPad.

In the coming weeks, Google Photos and YouTube Music will roll out 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.

Search YouTube in iOS

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

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

Google didn’t hint anything coming in the future, but this really shows what it can do with iOS when Apple lets it.

Any future integrations with Spotlight search will surely be dependent on Apple’s approval.


Featured Image: Screenshot from, September 2021.</1>

Category News SEO
SEJ STAFF Matt G. Southern Senior News Writer at Search Engine Journal

Matt G. Southern, Senior News Writer, has been with Search Engine Journal since 2013. With a bachelor’s degree in communications, ...

Google’s Apps Work Different on iOS 15

Subscribe To Our Newsletter.

Conquer your day with daily search marketing news.