It appears that Google is recognising that users may love Google devices but they want Google apps that run on iOS to behave like iOS apps rather than Android style apps that just so happen to run on iOS (link). I can see why they made the choice in the first place if one views It from the perspective of:
- Consistency over the platforms that they support – the same look and feel so that the same experience is provided on all platforms rather than having to deal with each platforms quirks.
- Not having to maintain two UI codebases – use the same Material for iOS framework for all Google applications then move the platform forward with all the applications that use it automatically inheriting the benefits (and the framework itself is updated with each version of IOS to take advantage of the improvements that particular version of iOS brings).
Like many attempts by developers to abstract from the underlying platform, the experience ends up being subpar and the amount of man power saved doesn’t offset the non-native feel. For me, it is the reason why I’ve never been a fan of Firefox because it always feels as though as a Mac user that I was an after thought when compared to the experience Firefox delivered on Windows or Linux. Many years ago there was Camino which was a Cocoa frontend to the Gecko web engine but it never gained official support so it was always a project that struggle to build mindshare resulting in bugs not being fixed etc.
Long story short, we’re Apple customers first and you provide us with the service and software that runs on out platform of choice so as a result it should look the part. If you want to try something different and innovative then that is what Android is for and if it means that certain features are only available on Android then that might act ass an incentive for people to migrate to Android in much the same way that iMessage is a ‘must have feature’ which entice people to the iOS platform.
On a side note, Apple has released iOS 15.0.2 and it appears that the IOMbileFrameBuffer, graphics stack and kernel have been getting a good work out in terms of receiving bug fixes over the last few months (link). It isn’t surprising given that such an area is fraught with complexity resulting in nasty bugs appearing where you really don’t want them to appear. Looking forward to macOS 12 and I’ve still got it marked on the calendar that iOS 15.1 and macOS will be release around the same time – probably a week or so after the Mac refresh that is rumoured to be happening soon.