Keeping your iPhone, iCal, Addressbook and Google Accounts in Sync

I use Google to manage host my email, calendar and contacts. This obviously allows me to connect to my data from any location. However, I really like the productivity software that comes with the Mac and there is a benefit to keeping your contacts inside the Mac Address Book.

Google has some ability to do this using ActiveSync but it never worked cleanly for me.

I struggled to find a great solution until I discovered Spanning Sync. I was going to create a screencast showing you how great it was but the people at Spanning Sync Inc. already did. Check it out below.

Spanning Sync installs as a System Preferences application. When you click it, you are presented with the sync options. You can choose to sync one or more calendars and your contacts. You can also choose how often to sync. Because I want to make sure that I have my calendar synchronized at all times, I choose 10 minutes. Close the System Preferences and you are all set.

The first time you sync especially if you have a large number of contacts might take a few minutes. After that, the process is very seamless.

Spanning Sync is also smart about conflict resolution. When there is a conflict between copies of your data, Spanning Sync shows a Window which let’s you specify which copy of the data is most current.

Spanning Sync isn’t free, however, at $25US. It’s a great bargain that will help keep your web based Google Accounts in sync with your Mac OS X applications.

If you have any other ways to synchronize Mail, Address Book and iCal with Google GCal please tell us here.

About Joe Cotellese

Joe is the founder of Learning OS X. He's often spending way too much time playing with new Mac software in order to improve his ability at "Getting Things Done."


  1. Stunning insights explained by you. i’ve tried lots of iphone app for synchronizing mail and address book but i was failed. but after showing features of Spanning Sync, i m loving it.

  2. Hello from Russia!
    Can I quote a post in your blog with the link to you?

  3. Good idea. Keep my iPhone and Google Accounts in Sync. Thanks.

  4. really great post.i faced this problem lots of time but not again as i came to know abut this Spanning sync learned so many new things here.thanks for sharing your wisdom.

  5. Its very useful info,
    sync will really save time for updates.


  6. The examples you mention are the best out-of-the box ways to sync all of your contacts and mail. But with a little hard work and a lot of learning, you can develop custom solutions that can make your system work way better for you.

    While this may be more trouble than it’s worth if you’re doing it just for yourself, you can distribute these applications within an organisation or thru the app store.

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