Google ups the iPhone ante with better apps

Announces improvements to web services after hot Christmas

The Apple iPhone connected to the internet more than any other mobile device during the Christmas period. That's despite representing only approximately 2 per cent of the world's smartphone market, The New York Times is reporting.

A few days later, the iPhone dropped back down to second place behind Symbian OS phones, but it looks like one company took notice - Google. In an attempt to accommodate all those users, and probably to respond to Yahoo's impressive mobile showing at CES, Google has unveiled a slew of new features that should make any iPhone owner happy.

According to the company, all its mobile applications have been tweaked for use on the iPhone. Their looks have been improved too, which should help them work better on the device's touchscreen.

Gmail works so you don't have to

Perhaps most intriguingly, Google has also announced that its Gmail application will now auto-refresh in the mobile Safari browser so users will have a constantly updated inbox waiting for them. And in an attempt to appeal to Google Gadgets users, the company has said that iGoogle has been optimised so iPhone users can now enjoy all their Gadgets on their mobile phone.

All of these features are available now when iPhone users simply surf over to the Google homepage.