Need To Access iCloud On Your Android? We Can Help!

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iCloud is a great way to keep your e-mail, contacts, calendar, and tasks synced across your Apple devices. But what if you decide to switch from an iPhone to an Android phone? Or if you get a Mac for work? Apple doesn’t always play nice with other ecosystems, but you can access iCloud from your Android with the right apps.

E-mail

Every Android device comes with the Gmail app as well as an app called Email, and this is the app that we’ll be using to access your iCloud e-mail. You can also use an alternative e-mail app, if you so choose. If you’ve set up an IMAP or POP3 e-mail address before, this process will be familiar to you. If not, don’t worry—it’s quite easy.

  1. Open the Email app and tap the menu button in the top-right corner. (If you’ve never used the Email app before, just open it and go to step #3.)
  2. Tap Add Account.
  3. Enter your iCloud e-mail address and password, then tap Next.
  4. Select IMAP and tap Next.

incoming-server-settings

  1. When you see the Incoming Server Settings page, remove the “@icloud.com” from your username.
  2. Change the IMAP server to “imap.mail.me.com.”
  3. Set the security field to SSL/TLS (Accept all certificates).
  4. Make sure the port is set to 993, then tap Next.

outgoing-server-settings

  1. On the Outgoing Server Settings page, change the SMTP server to “smtp.mail.me.com.”
  2. Change the security setting to STARTTLS and make sure the port is set to 587 and “Require sign-in” is checked.
  3. Tap Next to complete the process.

Once you’ve gone through this list of steps and saved your changes, you’ll be able to access your iCloud mail via the Email app on your Android phone. Pretty simple!

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If you have any difficulties with this, you can try changing the security type in the incoming or outgoing server settings. The combination of security settings that I mention above is the one that worked for me, but you might find that you need to use a different one.

Contacts

Syncing your contacts between iCloud and Android isn’t quite as simple as adding your iCloud e-mail address. However, some developers have created apps that will help you out and make the process a lot easier. The easiest way to go is to install SmoothSync for Cloud Contacts ($3.99), which was created specifically for syncing your iCloud contacts with your Android phone.

To use the app, just download it and enter your iCloud username and password. Your iCloud contacts will now be synced with your Android ones! Note, however, that you should probably install and run the JB Workaround Cloud Contacts app (free) first.

If you’d rather use a free option, you can download CardDAV-Sync beta (free) and use the instructions below.

Note: the workaround apps for SmoothSync and CardDAV-Sync Beta are different apps. You don’t need the CardDAV-Sync workaround app for the free version, but there’s a paid version of CardDAV-Sync Beta that requires the workaround.

  1. Install and open CardDAV-Sync Free Beta.

add-carddav-account

  1. In the server name or URL field, enter “contacts.icloud.com.”
  2. Enter your Apple ID and password in the username and password fields then tap Next.

name-carddav-account

  1. Enter a name for the account, and decide whether you’d like one-way or two-way sync.
  2. Tap Finish to complete the process.

Your contacts will now be synced between your iCloud account and your Android device — and if you’ve already synced your iCloud contacts with your iPhone or iPad, you’ll be able to access them wherever you are.

Calendar

Just as with the contacts, there are two different apps that I’ll recommend. The first is SmoothSync for Cloud Calendar ($2.98) — it’s created by the same developer as SmoothSync for Cloud Contacts. Using it is just as simple. Download and install it, enter your username and password, and let it go to work. Easy!

This developer has also published CalDAV-Sync ($2.89), an app that allows you to sync any CalDAV or Webcal calendar to your Android device. While it’s not free, it’s well worth the price tag if you want to sync up iCloud and your Android. The setup is exactly the same as above, but uses the JB Workaround CalDAV-Sync (free) workaround app and a different server name.

  1. Install the workaround app and run it.
  2. Install and open CalDAV-Sync.

add-caldav-account

  1. In the server name / URL field, enter “calendar.icloud.com.”
  2. Enter your Apple ID and password in the username and password fields, then tap Next.

select-calendars

  1. Select the calendars to sync, then tap Finish.

Once you’ve done this, you’ll see your iCloud calendars show up in whichever calendar app you normally use.

add-account-caldav-sync

If you’d rather use a free app, you can use Caldav Sync Free Beta, which is confusingly not created by the same developer as the apps listed above. Instead of providing an app in which you can enter your information, it simply adds a CalDav Sync Adapter option in the Add Accounts pane of the settings.

Notes

Fortunately, syncing your notes from Apple’s very useful Notes app with your Android account is simple, though it does come with some limitations. To sync your notes, open up System Preferences from your Apple computer and click on Internet Accounts. Select the Google account that’s associated with your Android.

internet-accounts-google

Here, you’ll see a number of things that you can sync with your phone. By selecting Notes, everything that you add to your Notes app will be sent to your phone. Where will it show up? In your Gmail app, in a new label called Notes. This is a bit counterintuitive.

icloud-note-gmail

This has the disadvantage that when you sync your notes with your phone, they won’t sync with iCloud. In your desktop Notes app, you’ll see that you have notes under the Google heading and notes under the iCloud heading—they don’t get pushed to both. This is annoying, but if you have certain notes that you think might be good to have on your phone, you can push them there, while others can get backed up to iCloud.

inotes-android

The main limitation of this method is that you can’t edit your notes from your phone. The easy solution to this is to use iNotes ($2.99). Note that this app looks like it was made by Apple, but it wasn’t, and it will let you edit your notes from your phone.

Of course, you can always switch to Evernote and have your notes available wherever you are, on any device, to read and edit.

Reminders

If you use Apple’s Reminders app to keep track of your tasks, you can get access to them on your Android through a few different apps on your phone. If you’re using CalDAV-Sync or SmoothSync, you can do this quite easily by downloading Tasks (free) from the same developer. Because CalDAV provides support for task sync, Tasks simply piggybacks on the CalDAV connection set up by the other app to get your reminders.

reminders-tasks

Tasks is very simple and doesn’t provide a lot of extra functionality, giving it a similar feel to the Reminders app on your Mac, iPad, or iPhone. It’s also free, which makes it a very appealing option.

If you’re not planning on using CalDAV-Sync or SmoothSync, or you just want a different app, you can download Reminder for iCloud/iOS/iPhone ($2.99). It provides the same functionality and syncs with iCloud. Unfortunately, Reminder for iCloud/iOS/iPhone isn’t free, and at $3 it’s tough to justify it over a free alternative.

Conclusion

Syncing iCloud and your Android can take some time to get set up, but it’s well worth the effort if you have e-mail, contacts, calendars, and other data that you want to sync between your various devices.

Have you found any other good ways of getting access to iCloud from your Android? Share them below!

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20 Comments - Write a Comment

Reply

Fintea

I think this here is a very good alternative to sync the iCloud contacts to the Android device which support more stuff then the mentioned one AND it is cheaper. I found it at the Play Store here:https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.vcard.android and it sync my iCloud contacts well.

So probably its worth to mention it as an alternative

Dann A

Looks like it would do the job just fine! I’ve never heard of it before, but it seems pretty legit. And at $1.99, it’s not very expensive.

However, CardDAV-Sync is cheaper, as it’s currently free. Once it comes out of beta, it’ll likely be more than $1.99, but we’ll have to wait to find out. Until then, though. CardDAV-Sync is cheapest option out there.

Thanks for posting! Always glad to have more options in the list.

Fintea

Hi the free CardDAV-Sync version is very limited you can’t sync all iCloud contact fields and are missing important ones like notes, relations, and so one. So I don’t think that the free one is comparable to ContactSync which sync all that stuff.

Reply

Mary M

My phone would not move from the incoming server to the outgoing one without an IMAP prefix. No idea what to write in there!

Reply

joey

…what about apps

Reply

danthe2014

Personally I use an application called Sync for iCloud Mail. It is very easy to use. You just enter your username and password and everything is done for you.
The user interface is also very nice, and the application is very easy to use.
Here is the URL for those of you who are interested:
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.granita.icloudmail

Dann Albright

Thanks for recommend that app! I haven’t used it myself, but it sounds pretty useful.

Reply

Chris

Great article! For Calendars and Contacts, there’s now also DAVdroid. It’s an open- source CalDAV/CardDAV app (both in one app) and works well with iCloud, too!

Dann Albright

Thanks for recommending DAVdroid. I don’t use an Android phone any longer or I’d try it out . . . but hopefully some others find it useful!

Reply

USer42

sadly, no information on how to set up the calendar using the “Caldav Sync Free Beta” is a bit of a let down.

Dann Albright

Glad you found a solution that works for you! Switching between an iPhone and an Android (or vice versa) can be pain, but using the right tools makes a big difference. Thanks for reading!

Reply

Anonymous

This was a bloody useful page. I’m grateful & thanks

Dann Albright

Happy to hear that it’s been useful for you! Thanks for reading.

Reply

MT

Yeap, buy and use a Blackberry Device or a Windows 8.1 device… You’ll have your contacts and calendar on both, just by adding an account iCloud, Google, Outlook, Ovi, or whatever you use. Easy and seamlessly. Blackberry will install android applications. I found the ones I use to install easily and effortlessly.. However google services you have to go through some workaround… You will not have any google services, but I’ve found I can live without them just fine.

I find the blackberry the most useful. After using Lumia 1520 and blackberry Passport, I find going back to pure samsung N3. Tedious and frustrating.. I feel I’ve got better control over the other two, for what I use it… Kind of got sick and tired of the Android Samsung, Knox drama and rooting….

Windows 8.1 has its shortcomings too as everything. But I can carry all my contacts and calendars including iCloud with no hassle… don’t care what I update anymore, its all where it needs to be when I need it, regardless of the device I use… and that my friend, is priceless… at least to me!!!

Dann Albright

Yes, using a system not owned by Google or Apple definitely has its advantages. However, changing devices isn’t a viable strategy for most people. Also, because the workaround isn’t all that difficult, I think a lot of people find it worth it to keep using their favorite devices.

Thanks for pointing out that other devices don’t always have these issues, though. That’s a good point!

Reply

Anna

Hi Dann, please what about just accessing files stored in iCloud (i.e. password storage) from my Android mobile? Many thanks

Dann Albright

I’m not sure about getting access to your Keychain, but there’s an app called iCloudDrive for Android that might do what you’re looking for. I haven’t tried it, as I’m no longer using an Android phone, but it looks like a good bet. You might also be able to do it through your browser—it would take a while, but might work in a pinch.

Reply

Anna

Thanks Dann, I will search for and try.

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