I learned a few things about iOS over the weekend when I was trying to get my GMail contact list to work on my iPhone.
- The bundled iOS GMail app does not synchronize contacts. If you want to be able to see your GMail contacts, you need to create an Exchange Account and point it to your GMail account. Google refers to this as “Google Sync”, but it’s really just Exchange ActiveSync under the covers. Follow this link for directions on how to do this.
- If you don’t have a iCloud me.com account, the iOS Notes application will synchronize with your GMail account (if it exists). I found this out the hard way when I added an Exchange GMail Account and removed my GMail Account. All of my notes were erased from existence, which was a little disconcerting. After I restored my GMail account, my notes returned. However, the new problem was duplicated emails and calendar entries on my iPhone.
I ended up needing two GMail account configurations on my iPhone:
- GMail: Email, Calendar, Notes
- Exchange GMail: Contacts
Things are supposed to “just work” in the Apple universe, but this was a bit of a #fail on the part of both Google and Apple.