Google Introduces An Easier Way To Sync Gmail Contacts To Your iPhone

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No need to let Facebook and Twitter have all the iOS-integration fun: today, Google announced a new, easier way for Gmail users to sync their Google Contacts to their iOS devices. The company is introducing support for an open protocol called CardDAV, which will allow third party clients, including, most notably, the native iOS Contacts app, the ability to sync with Google Contacts.

There are already a number of ways to get your Google Contacts onto your iPhone. For example, the Apple app stores on iOS and Mac contain several third-party clients which offer the ability to sync Google contacts to your device. I’ve been enjoying the Mac app Cobook. Plus, you can configure iTunes to specifically sync your Google Contacts, if you’re eschewing iCloud, or you can set up Google Sync. But the new CardDAV support means you can quickly set up contact sync directly on your phone in just a few steps, if you have yet to import your Google contacts through another means.

Google has posted the detailed instructions here, and they’re fairly straightforward:

  • Open the Settings application on your device.
  • Select Mail, Contacts, Calendars.
  • Select Add Account…
  • Select Other
  • Select Add CardDAV Account
  • Fill out your account information in the following fields:
    • -Server: Enter “google.com”
    • -User Name: Enter your full Google Account or Google Apps email address.
    • -Password: Your Google Account or Google Apps password. (If you’ve enabled 2 Step verification, you’ll need to generate and enter an application specific password.)
    • -Description: Enter a description of the account (e.g. Personal Contacts).
  • Select Next at the top of your screen.
  • Make sure that the “Contacts” option is turned to ON.

When you’ve finished the setup, the sync will automatically begin.

Google already supports IMAP for email and CalDAV for calendar, which enable mobile users on iOS and Android the ability to access Gmail and Calendar, respectively.