How to use an iPhone with your Chromebook – Guide

Using an iPhone with a Chromebook certainly feels a little out of place. Obviously, Android makes a little more sense, given the intimate connection they both have with the Google ecosystem. However, many loyal iPhone users turn to the simplicity and accessibility of a Chromebook for school or work tasks. It takes some effort, but you can use an iPhone with your Chromebook and be happy about it. The key is to take Google life out of Chrome OS and sync it to your iPhone. This can be easy in some cases as Google offers most of its important apps on iOS. Elsewhere, things can be a little more complicated, like receiving and sending text messages through your Chromebook. Regardless, there are some workarounds you can use to alleviate these weaknesses and increase your iPhone and Chromebook fun. In this article, we’ll take a look at the most important ones. tips and tricks to use an iPhone with your Chromebook.

cloud storage

To really commit to a Chromebook as your primary machine, you really need to use Google Drive as your primary cloud storage solution. That doesn’t mean you can’t use iCloud for backups of your iOS devices, but for documents, photos, and other essential work data, you’ll want to store them in Google Drive. Fortunately, Google Drive has an easily accessible iOS app that you can download to your iPhone. Most apps also let you easily save things to Google Drive, so this isn’t a big inconvenience. Of course, if you already use something like Dropbox or Box, these are also viable options, as they are available on iOS and Chrome OS. If you don’t like Google Drive, I would recommend Dropbox as the next best alternative, as it can be easily integrated into your Chromebook’s file system and set as the default save location.


If you want a seamless productivity experience between your iPhone and Chromebook, install all Google Workspace apps on your iPhone. Use Google Docs for composing documents, Google Sheets for spreadsheets, and so on. The good news is that all these apps sync seamlessly with Google Drive. This is also useful if you use an iPad (which is still the best tablet actually), as you can work on all your devices without missing a beat. Of course, there are some iOS productivity apps that aren’t available on your Chromebook and vice versa. A good example of this is the Ulysses writing app, which I personally use on iOS for short drafts of my articles before moving to WordPress. In such cases, you may need to save these files directly to Google Drive or save them to iPhone and then move to Google Drive. Admittedly, this is a bit of a nuisance, but you can still use your favorite iOS-only productivity apps with a Chromebook.

Syncing Notes and Favorites

Both iOS and Android have their own default note apps. Apple’s app is simply called Notes, while Google’s app is called Keep Notes. Since the Apple Notes app is not available outside of the Apple ecosystem, it’s best to use Keep Notes. You can download Google Keep Notes from the App Store on your iPhone and easily sync notes between your iPhone and Chromebook. As for bookmarks, you can now set Chrome as your default browser on iOS. In fact, this wasn’t possible a few years ago, which made it more difficult to sync browser history, bookmarks, and other important information between an iPhone and a Chromebook. To set Chrome as your default browser on iOS, just go to Settings in the Chrome app itself (see screenshots above). Of course, if you use something like Evernote to save links, you can also add that to your workflow, as Evernote is also a cross-platform solution.


Perhaps the most complicated thing to deal with when using an iPhone and Chromebook together is messaging. With an Android device, you can get all your text messages phone on your Chromebook instantly. Unfortunately, this isn’t possible with an iPhone, and you can’t use Google Messaging for the Web either, as you need to install the Google Messaging app – which isn’t available on iOS. My solution for integrating messaging on my iPhone is to use Google Chat for most of my messaging needs. I know this is not an ideal solution as some users still prefer texting, but Google Chat is available on iOS and you will instantly receive notifications on your Chromebook and iPhone for any chat messages that arrive while you is working. There are also other platform-independent messaging apps like WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger (although I don’t recommend it) and Snapchat that work across the iOS and Chrome OS / Android ecosystems. At the final of the day, it’s no big deal if you can’t reply to every message on your Chromebook, but you should be able to receive some of them if you use these popular apps.


Apple and Google have incredibly popular photo apps. As a loyal Android and Chrome user, I would say Google’s solution is the best, which is really good because it’s also available on iOS. Apple doesn’t offer the Photos app on Android, so you really need to use the Google solution here to sync your photos to your Chromebook. This is by far the easiest solution, but of course there is the problem of original quality backups and paying for Google storage if you take a lot of pictures. You can also manually transfer photos, which I’ll delve into in a future article, but this is a little more complicated than using Google Photos. Keep in mind that most Chromebooks don’t have a lot of storage space on board, so you may not be able to locally store all the photos you take anyway.

Final note

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