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Google Calendar is arguably the easiest, most intuitive and most versatile way to organize your day. The only problem users commonly encounter is syncing it with their devices. While this is dead simple when using Android, and easy enough to view in a browser on a PC, syncing with other platforms is not always so obvious. Here’s how to do it.

A Quick History Of Sync

Syncing your Google account has become more difficult over the last year due to Google’s decision to stop supporting Google Sync for standard accounts. This service let users sync Google accounts with devices over the Microsoft Exchange ActiveSync protocol. However, Google started to phase out Sync beginning January 30, 2013. The company now relies on a different standard called CalD How To Synchronize Your Gmail, Google Calendar, And More With Your Linux Computer How To Synchronize Your Gmail, Google Calendar, And More With Your Linux Computer A good number of users highly value the services provided by Google, including emails, calendars, tasks, documents, and so much more. But Linux users also love their desktop applications, and how they often integrate very... Read More AV How To Synchronize Your Gmail, Google Calendar, And More With Your Linux Computer How To Synchronize Your Gmail, Google Calendar, And More With Your Linux Computer A good number of users highly value the services provided by Google, including emails, calendars, tasks, documents, and so much more. But Linux users also love their desktop applications, and how they often integrate very... Read More .

This means there’s a ton of now-outdated instructions for syncing with Google Calendar (and other Google services) that are no longer correct. If you start reading a guide to syncing with Google and it recommends selecting Microsoft Exchange in an options menu, move on. That method no longer works for your bog-standard free account.

iphonemicrosoftexchange

Except if you’re a user of Google Apps for Business, Government and Education. These paid services retain Google Sync functionality and, as such, the old instructions remain valid. Subscribers to Google Apps also have access to support documentation with instructions for connecting Google Sync to various platforms.

This article assumes you’re not a user of Google Apps, and thus have few options for syncing your Google Calendar.

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Windows 7 / Windows 8 / Outlook.com

There’s currently no way to properly sync your Google Calendar with Outlook, the Windows 8 Calendar app or Windows Live Mail. However, you can view your Google Calendar in these apps. To enable this open Google Calendar in a browser and then open calendar settings using the drop-down box (screenshot, below).

googlecalendar2

Find the Calendar you want to see in Windows and click on it, which will open its settings. Near the bottom you’ll see a “private address” listing which includes XML and ICAL. Click ICAL, then copy the provided URL.

googlecalendarical

Now, go to Outlook.com and login. Go to your Calendar and click Import, located in the toolbar at the top of the screen.

googlecalendaroutlook

A menu will open with Import and Subscribe tabs, click Subscribe. In the page that appears enter the ICAL URL you copied under “Calendar URL” and then enter whatever name, color and charm (icon) settings you desire.

This will make your Google Calendar visible in Outlook.com, the Windows 8 Calendar app and Windows Live Mail (which bundles a calendar for Windows 7). The latter two programs won’t show your Google events unless you’ve logged into them with the same Microsoft account you used to subscribe to your Google Calendar’s ICAL URL.

Windows Phone 8

Microsoft’s phone platform suffers the same problems as its desktop operating system. Rumor has it that Microsoft will be bringing new sync functionality that works with Google Calendar in Windows Phone 8.1, but this update is not yet available to the general public.

You can sync with Google Calendar via third-party apps, however. The options include True Calendar 8, Cal and Chronos Calendar, all of which can sync with both Google and Outlook.

Mac OS X

Syncing Google Calendar is the Mac OS X Calendar app is simple. You simply need to open the Calendar app, go to Preferences, then the Accounts tab. Click on the plus “+” button to add your Google account. You’ll need your login and password or, if you use two-factor authentication What Is Two-Factor Authentication, And Why You Should Use It What Is Two-Factor Authentication, And Why You Should Use It Two-factor authentication (2FA) is a security method that requires two different ways of proving your identity. It is commonly used in everyday life. For example paying with a credit card not only requires the card,... Read More , an app password.

macaccounts

Once synced, individual calendars can be managed using the menu bar on the left side of the Calendar app. You can add and edit events much as you would when using Google Calendar in a browser, as the changes are carried over to the server.

However, you must have your Google Calendar selected in the menu when you create an event to sync it with Google. If you instead have iCloud (or some other source) selected at the time the event is created, it will not sync with Google. The OS X Calendar app tries to make this obvious by color-coding your calendar. In my app, for example, Google Calendar is red, which means only red events are synced with Google.

You cannot create a new Google Calendar from the app, you will have to open the service in your web browser to do that.

iOS

Setting up Google Calendar with iOS is simple, too. Open Settings and then tap Mail, Contacts, Calendars. Tap Add Account and, in the menu that opens, hit Google.

googlecalendariphone

Enter your login information (once again, you’ll need an app password if you use two-factor authentication) and once you’ve done that make sure Calendars is enabled. You’re done! If things aren’t working as they should, you can troubleshoot Google Calendar and iOS Google Calendar Won't Sync With iOS? Try These Fixes Google Calendar Won't Sync With iOS? Try These Fixes After spending weeks looking for a solution as to why Google Calendar refused to sync certain calendars with iOS, it turns out there are a couple of fixes for what is a rather common issue. Read More some more.

The rules of the OS X Calendar extend to iOS. Events that you create must be created under your Google Calendar; if they’re created in iCloud or some other source they won’t sync with Google. You also can’t create a new Google Calendar from the iOS app.

BlackBerry

The way that you sync a BlackBerry with Google Calendar varies depending on its age and the operating system it’s running. If you have an older model running version 5, 6 or 7 of the BlackBerry OS, check out the company’s official instructions on how to sync with Google. This synchronization is two-way, but is limited to a fourteen day window, so you won’t see events that are more than fourteen days in the future. Repeating events are an exception.

blackberrycalendarsync

If you’re on a newer BlackBerry you can sync by downloading the Calendar Sync app from the BlackBerry World app store. The app is a third-party utility and costs $1.99. You’ll have to enter your Google username and password, of course, which means once again you’ll need to generate an app password if you use two-factor authentication. This app also supports two-way synchronization, meaning you can both view and add events to a calendar.

Conclusion

This article contains everything you need to know about syncing Google Calendar. If you know a clever trick not cover here, however, let us know in the comments!

  1. Speedy Hippo
    November 21, 2016 at 8:46 pm

    Nice article, but the problem is that Google calendar does not update "Other calendars" often. Probably once a day, which really is a shame. If a meeting is rescheduled or a new appointment is made in your exchange calendar, it will probably take a day before you see the change on Google calendars. A real nice solution for the people who have a pretty static calendar, however, one cannot completely rely on it.

  2. Bart
    September 26, 2016 at 12:02 am

    I'm trying to sync my Google calendar with my Blackberry Classic calendar. The Cal Sync app keeps giving me a java script error. It work last year for hockey season, but doesn't work now. Any ideas?

  3. Colleen Pinkerton
    August 15, 2016 at 2:12 pm

    Will Google calender and AIRBNB calender sync. I'm trying to but cannot seem to do it.
    Any suggestions?

  4. Jim Kissane
    February 11, 2016 at 10:44 pm

    My Win 7 desktop (IE or Chrome browser) stopped syncing my calendar with my Android Galaxy Tam 5.
    Browser to Phone shouldn't be this hard to figure out. But none of the documentation seems to help. Suggestions?

  5. BALAJI N V
    December 26, 2015 at 1:27 pm

    Still reminder does not get sync with Calendar

  6. Janet Fiedler
    September 6, 2015 at 5:59 pm

    Thanks so much! This worked like a charm for my Motorola Moto G 3rd Generation phone using the Google calendar.

  7. Gillian
    February 25, 2015 at 3:05 pm

    I'm hoping you can help... I use both google calendar on my ipad and on my laptop. Everything that I input onto my calendar on my laptop syncs with google calendar on my ipad, however, anything I add onto my ipad does NOT show on my laptop google calendar...

    I have removed 'calendars' from the icloud, however, I'm not sure what I else I can do...

    Any help/advice gratefully received!

  8. aajaanron
    February 19, 2015 at 5:43 am

    This is exactly wht I needed, I wish I had googled the right "search" earlier. I had spent 3 hrs using the 'old' methods and extra apps when all I needed was your info and 45 seconds!

    Thank you very much (nice blog presentation too)

  9. jessica
    January 24, 2015 at 5:26 pm

    I looked all over the windows site to find this information! thank you!

  10. Jon Schreiber
    January 23, 2015 at 8:54 pm

    I tried to sync my google calendar with my MacOSX calendar it did not work at all.

  11. Marius
    September 20, 2014 at 3:30 pm

    Thanks a lot for the help! There is so much pages saying this import to outlook cannot be done for windows phone

  12. Muhammadosamakhann
    July 3, 2014 at 8:01 pm

    Nice Post!
    Device Tracker for iPhone & iPad ( Track and Locate your device on the Web ):

    A real GPS tracker for your iPhone or iPad. Using this app you can track your iPhone or iPad anytime and anywhere from the web
    Keep a track of your device's location history and check it on the web anytime!
    If the phone is lost you can track it. If it is out of battery or turned off, you will still have its last known location before the phone lost power.
    http://j.mp/Dtrck

  13. x
    June 28, 2014 at 9:11 am

    T&A. butt, iPad, tan = journalism. Wow, what a great modern society!

  14. K. C.
    June 27, 2014 at 6:24 am

    I'd rather be interested in how to access your Google contacts via LDAP...

  15. Meena B
    June 26, 2014 at 8:38 pm

    i know nokia i almost dead, but is there a way to sync my nokia contacts with google contacts?

  16. k mac
    June 26, 2014 at 10:33 am

    “no way to properly sync your Google Calendar with Outlook” - Well not exactly.

    I keep my Outlook calendar, Google calendar, and the calendar app on my Android phone synced through MyPhoneExplorer app. Takes a few minutes to set up but works well. Keeps my contacts synced and transfers files also.

  17. Phil N
    June 26, 2014 at 5:29 am

    Google Calender works great in Lightning. it's amazing how easy it is to set up as well.

  18. Chris G
    June 26, 2014 at 2:07 am

    My desktop isn't covered?
    My phones aren't covered (windows mobiles) ?

  19. Ingo
    June 25, 2014 at 10:31 am

    After being unable to find a free way of doing it, I tried the gSyncit trial. And it sold me. http://www.fieldstonsoftware.com/software/gsyncit3/index.shtml

  20. Miklos
    June 25, 2014 at 7:26 am

    Matt, I would argue with this: "There’s currently no way to properly sync your Google Calendar with Outlook..."
    I use gSyncit (Fieldstonsoftware) and it works perfectly. Check it out...

    • R. Adam Quigley
      June 25, 2014 at 3:29 pm

      I have been using gSyncit for years. Great product.

  21. Larry
    June 24, 2014 at 9:16 pm

    I use Gsyncit with my team, I think it cost me about $30us for 3 users and it works great. We sync our laptops to Google Calendar. We don't use exchange because we are small.
    Cheers

  22. Tony
    June 24, 2014 at 5:53 pm

    If this article is for every other platform where is the Linux guide? Do you have any recomendations?

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