Gmail push on iPhone? Meet GPush

For 99 cents, GPush cajoles Apple's server to alert you to incoming Gmail messages. How does it do?

Jessica Dolcourt Senior Director, Commerce & Content Operations
Jessica Dolcourt is a passionate content strategist and veteran leader of CNET coverage. As Senior Director of Commerce & Content Operations, she leads a number of teams, including Commerce, How-To and Performance Optimization. Her CNET career began in 2006, testing desktop and mobile software for Download.com and CNET, including the first iPhone and Android apps and operating systems. She continued to review, report on and write a wide range of commentary and analysis on all things phones, with an emphasis on iPhone and Samsung. Jessica was one of the first people in the world to test, review and report on foldable phones and 5G wireless speeds. Jessica began leading CNET's How-To section for tips and FAQs in 2019, guiding coverage of topics ranging from personal finance to phones and home. She holds an MA with Distinction from the University of Warwick (UK).
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Jessica Dolcourt
2 min read
GPush on iPhone
Screenshot by Jessica Dolcourt/CNET

The arrival of push notification in Apple's 3.0 iPhone software whipped up excitement, though its real-world application still left users wanting more. On Monday, Tiverias Apps released GPush, a small (0.3MB), 99-cent application that fills in a gap with push notification for your Gmail account.

GPush alerts you to incoming Gmail messages with a red icon badge, a chime, and a semitransparent alert window that reads the sender's name and the subject line. (You can change these in the Notification settings.) The application interface itself does little, apart from collecting your log-in information once, and manually reregistering your credentials. All the rest works behind the scenes.

How did GPush do? Fair, in our tests, but not worthy of the hype we've seen elsewhere. Many alerts for incoming e-mails came through, either after sliding the phone to wake it from sleep, or while actively using the iPhone. However, many other messages lagged or weren't passed down from the server at all, though they still showed up in the Mail box.

GPush's developers said in a phone call that there could be issues if the phone frequently switches between Wi-Fi and 3G data and loses the data connection. During these moments of instability, GPush will queue the new messages for notifications. When the iPhone regains its service, GPush sends out only the most recent notification, an Apple limitation to keep alerts from flooding your screen.

If you rely on Gmail, GPush is probably worth the dollar for the risk, particularly if it's not your habit to incessantly check your in-box. PushMail ($4.99) is a competitor, another third-party workaround in the iTunes App Store, though it differs. Pushmail sends along any e-mail redirected to your "dopushmail.com" address, not just inbound Gmail messages. It takes more setup and maintenance work since you'll need to forward messages to a different account e-mail, but for those who crave privacy above all else, avoiding giving up your password and log-in may be worth the extra cost and setup.

GPush is available now in the iTunes store for 99 cents.