Google turns Drive for iOS into Android migration tool

Posted:
in iPhone edited December 2016
Google on Tuesday activated a new Google Drive feature that turns the cloud storage app for iOS into a migration tool capable of transferring calendars, contacts and photos from an iPhone or iPad to a new Android device.




Outlined on a page dedicated to assist iOS device owners switching over to Android, the new Google Drive functionality streamlines the often times laborious device setup process. Specifically, Drive backs up crucial iOS data like contacts and calendar events to Google cloud services, then pushes the information down to corresponding Android apps on a new phone.

The process takes only three steps, Google says. First, users need to install Google Drive on their iOS device, or ensure they are running the most current version of the software. A Google account is required to sign in to Drive, which subsequently provisions up to 15GB of free cloud space on Google's servers.

Next, users navigate to Menu > Settings > Backup and select which data sets to back up. Contacts are assigned to Google Contacts, Calendar events go to Google Calendar, and photos and video are uploaded to Google Photos. Depending on the amount of data (read photos), a backup might take a few hours to upload, and the process requires the iOS device to remain on with Drive running.

Once the Google Drive backup is complete, users who sign in to their Google account on a new Android device will see their data downloaded to the respective Android app automatically. Google reminds iOS deserters to switch iMessage off before completing the transition. In the past, customers who failed to disassociate iMessage from their mobile phone number experienced issues with undelivered SMS messages after switching to Android.

Apple introduced a similar, albeit more elegant, all-in-one migration tool called Move to iOS in 2015 to automate the transfer of user contacts, calendars, photos, videos, browser bookmarks, email accounts and SMS history from Android to iOS.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 19
    blastdoorblastdoor Posts: 1,893member
    I have many gripes about Apple but there is NO WAY that I would switch to android. 


    SpamSandwichSolipscooter63anton zuykovjSnivelylostkiwiapplepieguywatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 19
    I am sure Apple will be blocking this somehow. 
    applepieguywatto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 19
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 6,782member
    Great! Now all the former fanboys trashing Apple every day here have a tool to leave the platform. Let’s hope they use it.
    Soliericthehalfbeeroundaboutnowpscooter63anton zuykovlostkiwiajl1stapplepieguywatto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 19
    SoliSoli Posts: 8,678member
    I am sure Apple will be blocking this somehow. 
    Unless they are using private iOS APIs or copying information for transfer that is not allowed to accessible across the sandbox, I don't see an issue with it. This certainly doesn't look like a Trojan horse feature, and it makes sense and that data copied to Google Drive would be formatted in a way that's most accessible to other platforms. Apple does this with iCloud for Windows, as well as having specific Windows Migration Assistant and Move to iOS (on Android )migration tools.
    edited December 2016 gatorguybestkeptsecretGrimzahn
  • Reply 5 of 19
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 20,278member
    I am sure Apple will be blocking this somehow. 
    Is Google blocking Move to iOS? Nope. I can't think of a reason for Apple to block iOS to Android migration tools. 

    lordjohnwhorfindasanman69
  • Reply 6 of 19
    Funny that Move can bring more items over to the iPhone (like SMS) than Google can bring back. Simply because Apple has stricter privacy permissions than Android. Meaning any migration tool will always work better going from Android to iOS than iOS to Android.

    SMS/iMessage is a HUGE one for me. I keep a lot of conversations around, sometimes even years after they're finished. Very useful if you want to go back and check a conversation you had with someone (for me a big one is tenants and discussions over any agreements we made). And this is one area Apple doesn't allow developers to access. There isn't even a Permissions setting to give you the option to allow access. Same for call logs.
    pscooter63ajltechprod1gywatto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 19
    Funny that Move can bring more items over to the iPhone (like SMS) than Google can bring back. Simply because Apple has stricter privacy permissions than Android. Meaning any migration tool will always work better going from Android to iOS than iOS to Android.

    SMS/iMessage is a HUGE one for me. I keep a lot of conversations around, sometimes even years after they're finished. Very useful if you want to go back and check a conversation you had with someone (for me a big one is tenants and discussions over any agreements we made). And this is one area Apple doesn't allow developers to access. There isn't even a Permissions setting to give you the option to allow access. Same for call logs.
    Funny that Samsung has had a app called smartswitch that could do all of that for well over a couple of years now. It can transfer over pretty much everything from iOS to a Samsung, including sms, pretty easily. 
    techprod1gydasanman69
  • Reply 8 of 19
    MacProMacPro Posts: 18,141member
    gatorguy said:
    I am sure Apple will be blocking this somehow. 
    Is Google blocking Move to iOS? Nope. I can't think of a reason for Apple to block iOS to Android migration tools. 

    I agree.  Anyone daft enough to want to leave Apple for Google's mobile OS should be aided in every way possible.  The app name should perhaps be changed though.   Is 'Don't let the door hit you on the way out' too long do you think? 
    anton zuykovgatorguyapplepieguywatto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 19
    They'll Be Back
    SpamSandwichwatto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 19
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,428member
    I heard that the tool comes with built in recommendations for psychiatrists in or near your zip code, because what kind of lunatic would move from iOS to Android?
    lordjohnwhorfinapplepieguywatto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 19
    Funny that Move can bring more items over to the iPhone (like SMS) than Google can bring back. Simply because Apple has stricter privacy permissions than Android. Meaning any migration tool will always work better going from Android to iOS than iOS to Android.

    SMS/iMessage is a HUGE one for me. I keep a lot of conversations around, sometimes even years after they're finished. Very useful if you want to go back and check a conversation you had with someone (for me a big one is tenants and discussions over any agreements we made). And this is one area Apple doesn't allow developers to access. There isn't even a Permissions setting to give you the option to allow access. Same for call logs.
    Funny that Samsung has had a app called smartswitch that could do all of that for well over a couple of years now. It can transfer over pretty much everything from iOS to a Samsung, including sms, pretty easily. 

    Perhaps I should have clarified my post. No legal tool that abides by the Terms & Conditions of either Apple for iOS or Google for Android will ever be able to get as much data from an iOS device as it can from an Android device.

    Smart Switch (like all those iCloud browsers) is not abiding by Apples Terms & Conditions because they are accessing iCloud by tricking it into thinking it's iTunes or an iOS device doing a restore. I'm actually surprised Apple hasn't sued Samsung for this (I can see Apple ignoring the countless small developers who make this type of software). Perhaps they feel it's not worth it to have another Samsung v Apple trial or bad publicity around what would appear as Apple preventing a person from taking their data with them to another phone.

    The App this article is about (Google Drive) is limited in what it can transfer - specifically only things you allow it access to. And on an iOS device it's not possible to allow any App to see your iMessages or your call log. On an Android device you can grant access to this information.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 12 of 19
    Funny that Move can bring more items over to the iPhone (like SMS) than Google can bring back. Simply because Apple has stricter privacy permissions than Android. Meaning any migration tool will always work better going from Android to iOS than iOS to Android.

    SMS/iMessage is a HUGE one for me. I keep a lot of conversations around, sometimes even years after they're finished. Very useful if you want to go back and check a conversation you had with someone (for me a big one is tenants and discussions over any agreements we made). And this is one area Apple doesn't allow developers to access. There isn't even a Permissions setting to give you the option to allow access. Same for call logs.
    Funny that Samsung has had a app called smartswitch that could do all of that for well over a couple of years now. It can transfer over pretty much everything from iOS to a Samsung, including sms, pretty easily. 

    Perhaps I should have clarified my post. No legal tool that abides by the Terms & Conditions of either Apple for iOS or Google for Android will ever be able to get as much data from an iOS device as it can from an Android device.

    Smart Switch (like all those iCloud browsers) is not abiding by Apples Terms & Conditions because they are accessing iCloud by tricking it into thinking it's iTunes or an iOS device doing a restore. I'm actually surprised Apple hasn't sued Samsung for this (I can see Apple ignoring the countless small developers who make this type of software). Perhaps they feel it's not worth it to have another Samsung v Apple trial or bad publicity around what would appear as Apple preventing a person from taking their data with them to another phone.

    The App this article is about (Google Drive) is limited in what it can transfer - specifically only things you allow it access to. And on an iOS device it's not possible to allow any App to see your iMessages or your call log. On an Android device you can grant access to this information.
    Fair enough. Wasn't trying to come off as bad as I did when I re read what I wrote. My apologies. 

    Shouldn't I, as the owner of my information of things such as the call log and iMessage information, be able to take that where ever I want? I should be able to take all my information, from everything I use Apple wise, at anytime to anywhere I want. 
    gatorguy
  • Reply 13 of 19

    All Apple needs to do now is update their Move to Apple app from Android with the ability to transfer Google and Samsung Calendar, Google Photos along with maybe Memo and Notes including Voice Recordings then it will be so much more easier for someone to migrate there data from Android to iPhone. Another option I would also like to see is for them to give you an option to choose what can be transferred from Android smartphones that have external storage and give you the option to move the external data right to iPhone.





  • Reply 14 of 19
    Here's to hoping the iPhone 8 is great, because another same-old release and I might put this migration tool to use.
  • Reply 15 of 19
    maestro64maestro64 Posts: 4,476member

    When I was on android for many years, I personally never use the Google to store contact and such. I used to sync the phone with a computer and via outlook. Getting contacts and such move from one new phone to another was never a big deal. The issue I always had and I still believe it is the case depending on the phone and I will tell I only used Motorola so I know this was quirk with Motorola, Android OS as whole did not allow you to sync things like App prefs and set up information and save game states. SO that meant every time you update the phone and something the OS for the very few times I got an update, you lost all the other important things about using apps on a phone.

    With that said I know there were third party app that help transfer the non contact and calendar items which make the phone useful. But these things were a pain to use. Only the google phones actually worked kind of like the iphone from a backup standpoint but you had to use their cloud services which I did not like doing.

    Other than the iphone the issues still exist as far as I know that moving between non iphone does not set up the new phone exact as the old one. Apple nailed this and I do not mind moving to a new Iphone it is a 20 minute activity and I am ready to go.

    watto_cobra
  • Reply 16 of 19
    I recently went on play store to get the move to iOS app for my fiancée.

    I was blown away by how many Fandroids downloaded it just to leave a negative review. There were as many one star reviews as 5 star.

    the overwhelming majority were whinging how iOS isn't open like the malware ridden android. Or how the file system is inaccessible.

    I've played with android a bit and I'll stick with iOS thanks 
  • Reply 17 of 19
    SoliSoli Posts: 8,678member
    I recently went on play store to get the move to iOS app for my fiancée.

    I was blown away by how many Fandroids downloaded it just to leave a negative review. There were as many one star reviews as 5 star.

    the overwhelming majority were whinging how iOS isn't open like the malware ridden android. Or how the file system is inaccessible.

    I've played with android a bit and I'll stick with iOS thanks 
    People that call themselves Apple fanboys can also be extremely petty, but I just checked out the Google Drive rating on the iOS App Store (first image) and it's night and day compared to Move to iOS on Google Play store (second image). That's a whole lotta time wasted to make a trivial complaint. 



  • Reply 18 of 19
    Funny that Move can bring more items over to the iPhone (like SMS) than Google can bring back. Simply because Apple has stricter privacy permissions than Android.
    I was able to transfer my SMS history without any fuss. Admittedly not quite as simply as installing and app, but still ridiculously easy. Also (and this is quite nuanced) iOS and Android actually have very similar privacy permissions. On either system before an app accesses user data for the first time it needs to ask permission from the user. The difference is that Android allows developers to ask for access a wider range of user data than iOS.
    gatorguy
  • Reply 19 of 19
    apple ][ said:
    I heard that the tool comes with built in recommendations for psychiatrists in or near your zip code, because what kind of lunatic would move from iOS to Android?

    It's funny you phrase it that way.

    I'm completely convinced Android provides a better user experience than iOS, baring users already thoroughly embedded into the Apple eco-system.

    What raises questions isn't the OS but the hardware. The only phone running Android that is capable of trading blows with an iPhone is a Pixel, and even then it's evenly matched (e.g. the Pixel has a superior screen, camera and form factor but the iPhone is waterproof, true lens zoom and presumably better resale).

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