Sync-ing your iPhone’s Google Contacts/Address Book got you sunk? Fear not!
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, December 23, 2011
2/26/12 Update: Be sure to read also “The Ultimate iPhone Apple Mac Google Contacts Address Book iCal Calendar iTunes sync post“
That should NOT be a problem.
Because iOS 5 has incorporated features into it that make synchronization seamless and virtually invisible, losing a note, email, address or contact is a thing of the past.
However! To take advantage of those built-in features, they must be turned ON! It’s a bit like a light bulb. While a match light or candle will light up a room in a dark environment, the light switch must be turned ON to keep a room lit for any length of time.
There’s genuinely nothing complicated about any of this. Literally.
So, let’s go through this step-by-step, so that you can get the greatest benefit from your iPhone. And just to be clear, you’re probably reading this because you have had some difficulty, for one reason or another – perhaps you say you’re not “computer savvy.” It doesn’t make any difference, because I hope to clear up the uncertainty, whatever the cause. This tutorial is presuming that you ARE already updated to iOS 5 – although most of the information is also applicable for lower iOS’s – and that you have and use contacts in some email type of program and/or an address book.
NOTE: If the only place your contacts exist is exclusively on your iPhone, you will need to change that BEFORE you proceed, or do anything else.
Back up your contacts! Back up your contacts! Back up your contacts!
Connect your iPhone to iTunes with the sync cord. Select your iPhone in the LEFT hand side of the page under the “Devices” heading.
NOTE: It would be good to check for, and eliminate any duplicates. Google’s Gmail can do this automagically, once you select that tool in the Contacts > More > Merge contacts. Many other address book apps can merge to eliminate duplicate contacts, as well.
Under the “Info” heading – which is the second item at top of iTunes page – the first boxed item is “Sync Address Book Contacts” which allows you to choose from “All Contacts,” or “Selected groups.”
Select your email service – either online such as Google’s Gmail, Yahoo!, or on your machine (such as connection to a work-related Microsoft Exchange email server and the client/app Outlook on your machine) – and how you want to arrange contacts who are outside your groups.
Part of the beauty of the system is that it’s possible to create several contact lists. For example, one list might consist of co-workers or colleagues, another might be family, another friends, another neighbors, while yet another might be clients.
In this example, since I use Google, I have chosen the option to “Sync Google Contacts.”
Open Address Book. Select the account(s) you want to synchronize. Here again, it’s best to select the SAME accounts as in iTunes.
Another part of the beauty of the system is that it supports several different email accounts. For example, you may have one email for work, another for family, another for casual Internet use – signing up for services/websites, etc.
Customize your iCloud settings. On your iPhone, open “Settings,” open “iCloud,” and select either On, or Off for a.) Mail; b.) Contacts; c.) Calendars; d.) Reminders; e.) Bookmarks; f.) Notes; g.) Photo Stream; h.) Documents & Data; i.) Find my iPhone.
NOTE: What is iCloud? iCloud stores your music, photos, documents, and more and wirelessly pushes them to all your devices.
iCloud is so much more than a hard drive in the sky. It makes it quick and effortless to access just about everything on the devices you use every day. iCloud automatically and securely stores your content so it’s always available to your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Mac, or PC. It gives you access to your music, apps, latest photos, and more from whichever device you happen to be using. And it keeps your email, contacts, and calendars up to date across all your devices. No syncing required. No management required. In fact, no anything required. iCloud does it all for you.
With iCloud, your entire address book is on whichever device you’re using, anytime you need it. Say you add someone to Contacts on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch. iCloud automatically pushes the new contact to Address Book on your Mac or to Outlook on your PC. So you don’t have to connect your device to your computer to keep track of all those names and faces.
Bookmarks, Notes, Reminders
iCloud stores the web pages you’ve bookmarked, notes you’ve written, and reminders you’ve created. It’s all there, everywhere you go. So when it comes to your devices, you can switch things up without mixing things up.
iCloud works great with popular applications including Mail and iCal on a Mac and Microsoft Outlook on a PC. But if you happen to be away from home without your computer or one of your iOS devices, you can access your mail, contacts, calendar, and documents — ad-free — from any computer at icloud.com.
NOTE ALSO: If you own an Apple-branded computer – i.e., MacBook Pro, iMac, MacBook Air, Mac Mini, Mac Pro, etc. (any Apple computer except those which are iOS devices, such as iPhone, iPad, iPod) – iCloud needs to be enabled/turned ON each device to allow a seamless integration. In essence, what will happen is that the device will synchronize over the air with iCloud as the “master device.” In the scenario presented above – synchronizing contacts from an external source with your iPhone (such as Google) – will be turned OFF when iCloud is turned ON. In essence, what we’re talking about is deciding which will be the master source: external contacts (such as Google contacts), or contacts on your iPhone. If you want your external contacts on iCloud, FIRST synchronize as mentioned above, THEN turn on iCloud. Here’s the message that pops up on the MacBook Pro (or any other Apple Computer).
Click on the “Sync” button on iTunes (located in the lower RIGHT corner of iTunes). Your contacts from your Address Book, Google contacts, or other non-iPhone source will be synchronized with your iPhone.
Step 7. (Optional) Once your contacts are synchronized, turn ON iCloud on your Apple computer.
FINAL NOTE: If you use a Macintosh/Apple computer, be certain to select the Google sync AND iCloud options in the Address Book preferences.