So, now that I have this shiny new Pixel XL I need to make sure it’s productive. That cannot really be done without my calendar and contacts being on here.
Due to this, having two-way sync between the Android and iCloud is a necessity.
Enter Smoothsync for Cloud Calendar. This is really the only app that seems to pop up on anyone’s lists of how to do this right.
There is also SmoothSync for Cloud Contacts to keep my contacts in sync.
From everything I found, the Cloud Calendar app is a for-fee app, but when I go to it in the Google store via my Chrome web browser it says it is already installed. I believe on a former Android device I already purchased this and used it, without luck if I recall correctly.
I can’t find it installed on the Pixel, and wind up on the Google Play store from the device where it wants $2.86 for it. No big deal. Until my payment method is declined? It is the credit card I have on-file with Google and it works, but anyway, I add PayPal as a method. Also declined. Perhaps there is an issue from it not being able to sell it too me even though I bought it in the past although it doesn’t seem to know that from the device but it does from my laptop? This is odd..
I jump over to the SmoothSync for Cloud Contacts page on the Google Play store on the device. I know I’ve never purchased this. The purchase goes through without issue, same payment details that I was trying. Something must be messed up from a prior purchase. I will get contacts syncing and then go back to troubleshoot the calendar issue.
I open the app and it prompts for my iCloud ID and password. I have two-factor enabled on my iCloud ID so I need to generate an app specific password to do this. I do it from my PC as I have no idea how to multi-task and/or jump between apps on the Pixel yet. I’ve even been using my iPhone, just on WiFi, to get to things for the same reason. I need to learn the Android navigation tactics.
Once an app-specific password is generated and added everything seems to work magically. My contacts are down. In the messages app I can see who texts are from, since I have no clue whose numbers those were. Things look good. It was essentially too easy. I went to the app and checked the options and such, but didn’t need to change any, it would have been fine, but just entering my iCloud ID and password was almost too simple of a setup for me.
I head back over to the Google Play Store page for the calendar sync. Now it tells it is is purchased and asks me to install it. I didn’t do anything other than had navigated away from it, and then back, but ok.
Once it installs I enter my ID and another app-specific password. It asks what calendars to sync, and I pick them all. It offers to sync iCloud tasks by installing another app, which I do. This syncs iCloud Reminders which is useful as we occasionally use a family shared reminders list. Again, this app just needed an install, very easy. Which is good, simple and effective is nice. It just seems too easy…
The one downside may be the sync interval, 6 hours for contacts isn’t an issue, but 4 hours for calendar seems too long. If my wife adds something to the shared family calendar I’d like to see it sooner than 4 hours. There is an option to force a sync anytime you log on the phone. I may activate that, but it mentions it will impact battery life, so for now I won’t.
So, calendar and contacts addressed. On to the next battle.