Google Keeps Mum as It Quietly Launches ‘Switch to Android’ App On iOS
Last year, rumors circulated that Google was working on a "Switch to Android" app for iOS users who wanted to switch from their iPhone to a smartphone running Google's Android operating system. That app is now available. Google discreetly released the Switch to Android app on the App Store in a number of international regions, including the United States, on Monday. The program, as expected, promises to make switching between mobile platforms easier by assisting users in transferring their contacts, calendar, images, and videos to their new Android device.
The app also shows users how to disable Apple's iMessage so that they can receive text messages on their new smartphone, as well as how to connect with iCloud to move their photo and video libraries to Android.
Google's Switch to Android website has yet to be changed to reflect the new app's availability, and the firm has yet to make an official announcement. The app is also missing from Google's App Store developer profile and App Store search results. It can only be accessed by following the direct link.
Currently, the Switch to Android website walks customers through the typical Android migration procedure, which includes backing up contacts, calendars, photos, and videos using the Google Drive iOS app before switching devices.
Last year, the website 9to5Google looked through the code within Android's official Data Restore Tool and discovered a reference to a Google-developed Switch to Android app for iOS, revealing the company's plan to produce a standalone software for iPhone-to-Android switchers. According to remarks in the code of another Android app, the program looked to have received the ability to instantly migrate a user's photographs and videos from iCloud to Google Photos just last month.
There have been other clues that Google has been working on backend technologies to make it easier for users to migrate their media assets to its platform and services. Google recently released an upgrade to the Google Photographs app that allowed users to copy photos from competing cloud storage services like iCloud, Facebook, and others to Google Photos. Transfers had to come via Facebook or iCloud before, not from Google's app.
Unfortunately, Google's new Switch to Android iOS app does not assist customers in moving their apps. This is most likely due to restrictions on what third-party apps can do with the user's device. That is, apps aren't supposed to scan a user's iPhone for a list of all the other apps they have installed.
The new app promotes its capacity to move users' content across devices without the use of "fussy cables" in its App Store description, which means the two phones don't have to be physically linked together to complete the operation.
Google's app comes many years after Apple's app, which aided in the conversion of Android users to iPhone. Apple released its Move to iOS app for Android customers in September 2015, which was the company's debut app on Google Play (besides those from its acquisition Beats.). Users' data, including their Camera Roll, Messages, Google Account, Contacts, and Bookmarks, were also migrated via the app.
Google didn't respond to a request for comment before publication, but did later reach out to inform that the app isn't currently available for download in the iOS app store, as we mentioned in our original story.
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