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How to Sync Your Google Calendar and Your iPhone Using OS4

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When Apple first released OS 2.0 and 3.0 for the iPhone, people were able to sync their devices with the Google servers, easily allowing them to access and edit their contacts and calendars. However, when they updated to 3.1, Apple broke the sync, leaving thousands in the dark. After finding workarounds, people were again able to sync their systems, and the world was a better place.

However, after releasing 4.0 on June 21st, Apple, yet again, broke this new workaround, leaving people without the possibility of syncing their iPhone, iPod Touch, and/or iPad to their Google Calendars. After losing all of my calendar information (which has really hurt my productivity), I started to mess around with various settings, finally finding one that, once again, lets me sync my GCalendar with my iPhone. As a nice person, I figured that I should help you out, as I am sure that this is a common problem.

To resync your iPhone, iPod Touch, or iPad, simply do the following:

  • On your device, go Settings
  • Navigate to Mail, Contact, Calendars – Add Account – Other – Add CalDAV Account
  • Once in the CalDAV settings, enter the information from the following picture (your username ad passwords should be the ones that you use to access your Google account):

  • Tap Next
  • Navigate to your device's Calendar
  • Click Calendar at the top left of the screen
  • Unselect all but the one under the '' header – if you do not do this, you will be able to see events from your GCalender, but not be able to add any.
  • If you have multiple calendars on other accounts, simply add them the same way. If you have muliple calendars on one account, go here and select the ones you want on your iPhone. Then, when entering an event, you can pick the calendar it goes on at the bottom of the event editing screen.

At this point, your system should be set up. I would recommend checking with some test events, but everything should connect (it might take a few minutes to transfer from one device to the Google server, and vice-versa). If you add, alter, or delete any event on either your device or your Google Calendar, it should update quickly on the other. Even if you are in airplane mode, when you reconnect, all changed events will show up.

This workaround worked very well for me, and I hope that it works well for you too. If it doesn't, let me know in the comments, and I will try to find out why. Other than that, see you all next time Apple updates their software.

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About Robert M. Barga

  • k

    Ok it works if you have one main calender but if you have multiples it wont recognise them thru the CalDAV account

  • barga

    There should be two under the google tab, is that the case for you?

  • k

    No just the one under google tab. I have five or six calendars in google all synced with my Ical on desktop just fine. I noticed OS4 has a setting that allows you to accept mail/ nots/ calendar etc in the same account which works the same. So I went back to your method but still no success

  • k

    BTW does SSL make a difference?

  • F

    Thank you! It worked perfectly.

  • barga

    K, Use SSL, but it should be automatic, I found something that might work for you, let me know if it worked (if it does, might edit to include this):

    1. Expand the “Server Options” section to expose the Account URL setting.
    2. For Account URL, specify “[Google Calendar ID]/user”. Note that it’s actually “/user” there at the end, not your user name. The Google Calendar ID in brackets is visible in Google Calendar by going to the settings for a calendar and looking toward the bottom of the Calendar Details tab. You’ll see some funky junk like “” or similar. That’s the Google Calendar ID.

  • barga

    F, no problem


    i did this and i’m getting a blank “new event” for everyday for the whole year.

    none of my events in google calender are syncing over.

    any clues?! thanks for the help

  • barga

    FYI, You need to set it up each time for the group URL thingy, however, there is a downside, while it will show all, I am not sure which one it will update if you add (have yet to try it myself). Please let me know when you test it what it does

  • barga

    Sleeper, I would delete your current attempt and try again. The only reason to get that would be that your GCalendar actually has that setup currently

  • barga

    another FYI, you can, apparently, when adding an event, pick the calendar at the bottom. This should let you add it to the Calendar you want.

    That is it for tonight, K, let me know if these worked for you. See you in the morning

  • Travis

    I just sync my calendar and gmail setting it up as an exchange account – directions are listed on google calendar under sync – sync with iphone
    Seems pretty easy and with OS 4 you can have more than one exchange acount – which before you could not. Mabye I am not understanding the issue you all are having but this is what works for me

  • barga

    Have you tested it. does it allow for multiple calendars as well as the editing and adding to multiple ones under the same user name?
    It wasn’t for me

  • barga

    K, last night I found this, which should fix your problem with no additional steps needed

  • Diane

    I’m with Travis – I didn’t have any issues with OS4 and I have sync set up with Exchange.

  • barga

    Congrats on that Diane, glad to hear that it works for you,
    From my research, quite a few people are having problems with that, which is why I posted this.

  • Sisco

    Ok, what if you had your iphone calendar synced with your google calendar AND your girlfriends calendar, so that you guys can see each others events. How do I set that up?

  • barga

    Just do this twice, and select both from the selection screen

  • Tee

    This worked great. Thanks so much. I was able to sync my iPhone and my iPad! Yippee!

  • barga

    no problem, I am happy that it worked well for you

  • bunz

    Thank you Thank you! Not having my 12 calendars was crimping my style!

  • MadDog

    DAMN! That worked PERFECTLY! My problem is that I have 2 calendars (right now) in Google Calendar, but did NOT want to sync the Default (the, which is what Exchange forces. By picking out the specific calendar code from the “Embed This Calendar” in the Calendar Details absolutely did the trick!


  • barga

    no problem, glad that you got it all working

  • MadDog

    Hmmm … now I have a different problem. This worked great for my iPhone, but I can’t get the calendar to show on my iPad. The settings for CalDAV are exactly the same but my iPad calendar is blank.

    The calendar is perfect in Google Calendar, but I have to be missing something here.

    Any ideas would be great.

  • MadDog

    Never mind. I just discovered that I need to keep the Exchange calendar ON, and then in Calendar, I get a button called “Calendars” on the top of the page that lets me select which calendars to display. With Exchange OFF, the button’s not there.

    Interesting, because on my iPhone, I have Exchange Calendar OFF, but it still shows the “Calendars” button in Calendar.


  • Jamie

    Have you tried this with google apps accounts? I have multiple calendars for my business through there but can only see “mine”. I tried using your steps, and then tried manipulating them to fit my needs (not, but my website, etc.) but still get yelled at about not being able to connect to the account. Any ideas?? Thanks!

  • Jamie

    I just found this via google. Worked for me, and now I can see all my calendars and employee’s calendars.

  • Mal

    Hi, so I have been reading your forum I set up the ICAL calendar with a 2nd google calendar and I have it all set up correctly but the calendar will not come down on my ipod touch…Can you help?

  • maurine

    I am technologically deficient and I just inherited my husband’s 1st generation iphone….What do you mean and how do you “unselect” for all but the google calendars. thank you!

  • barga

    go to the calendar
    hit ‘calendars’ in the top left
    unselect all (tap them) but the google ones

  • Loren

    Thanks. Worked great.

  • rosa

    thanks for sharing. before i do this, will the events i have scheduled on my iphone native app be deleted?

  • barga

    No they will not be
    this adds calendars, not changes them

  • dave-kbd

    This info helped me a lot.
    Compared with some of the users here my needs are simple. I just want to enter info to the calendar from the PC where I have a regular keyboard as opposed to doing it on the iPhone.
    My initial problem was that the iPhone collected the calendar correctly from Google calendar but events entered in the iPhone calendar didn’t show up in the Goole calendar. This was true for both calDAV and Exchange accounts.
    What I’ve found is that if when entering events on the iPhone, if I assign them to the Google calendar they show up in the google calendar on the PC ok. Furthermore I can alter events in the iPhone calendar so that they are assigned to the google calendar instead.
    Once all my events in the iPhone calendar were reassigned to the google calendar I could stop displaying the default iPhone calendar, and then events defaulted to the google calendar where they show up on both the PC and the iPhone.
    Later I noticed that in iPhone settings you can set the calendar entries to default to the calendar of your choice, which could be the google calendar.
    I haven’t tested exhaustively but all of the above seems to work for a calDAV account.
    This probably doesn’t help anyone who wants to use multiple calendars, but for people like me who want to keep a personal schedule without having to input it all on the iPhone, maybe it’s enough.

  • DaSpider

    There is a much better way. You can just configure an exchange account on the iPhone itself to wirelesly sync multiple calendars with Google’s exchange server.

    Here is how it’s done:
    Go to->Mail, Contacts, Calendars
    ->Add account->Microsoft Exchange
    Password *******
    Description xxxmycalwhatever

    Then on Safari go to -> Sync and pick the calendars you want synchronized.

  • ZZ

    A small advice in case someone runs into the same problem I did. I’m using exchange sync DaSpider described, and was only able to sync one (default) calendar. When I went to, I got the message that my iPhone was not a supported device. The message was in Croatian. All I had to do was change language to English (US), and it worked.

    Other than losing some functionality in translation, the Exchange sync works perfectly.

    Cheers, ZZ

  • Chris Blaisdell

    Worked for me! Thanks so much!

  • DC

    I did your work around, and I was able to sync both of my google calendars. But when I ran test with both my google default and work calendars, the test event never transferred to Google Calendar via my desktop. Waited 5 minutes and refreshed several times. Any ideas?

  • murphy


    I keep having to fight w/ the iPhone to convince it which of my Google Data I want to see. This was the third fix I tried, and it worked *instantly*

    I had to turn off the calendar info that was listed up under my email address, otherwise I got dual entries. Was that coming from the “fake” Exchange account that is used to sync my mail and contacts?

    As an aside, do you know of a better way to sync Google contacts with the iPhone OS 4.0?

  • Lenebene

    Thank you!! This fixed my issue!

  • Jason

    Thanks for posting this! Hurray for CalDAV.

    It’s frustrating that Apple provides a couple of different calendar syncing methods that don’t actually do over-the-air sync. This should be the default behaviour.

  • bate_g

    For me works great. Thanks a lot!

  • Haider

    Aaah. Relief! Spend hours trying to get this to work. You’ve really helped me preserve my sanity – thanks.

  • Anonymous

    Thank you! This was so helpful!

  • liz

    I am able to syn events that I enter into Google Calendar – but I do not see the events from my Iphone on my google calendar.

  • LightMuse

    this was a simple and easy to follow deal. Thanks for explaining. I can now keep all 6 of my calendars with me on the iphone4

  • Robert

    Liz, make sure that you have it set to default enter onto the google calander instead of the iphone one, otherwise you can not go iphone to google

    You’re welcome LightMuse

  • CC

    Wow, thank you SO much for the great tip! This is much, much better than accessing my Google calendar online — my old default approach. Thanks for sharing the workaround!

  • Justin

    Hi Robert – I just found this thread through a Google search and your post #14 (Jun 24, 2010 at 8:02 am) just saved me a ton of aggravation. Thank you so much!!

  • Anthony

    Works perfectly. Thanks for sharing.

  • Marco – Italy

    Great! it fully function!
    I’ve got iOS 4.2.1 no jailbreak.
    I’ve got 2 google account, one Gmail and one Google, ad i found the same calendare cloned; i had to delete the originally Gmail account and only the new (which I created following this guide) lives now…and… I find my google calendars (with Facebook Event and Birthday) and I’m free to see or blind one by one! many tanks again!

  • wasabi

    After wasting 4 hours trying to see why my set up does not sync, yours is the only updated ( shame on google docs HELP ) which explains that the sync does not work due to the OS update… It works for me finally! Thank you so much!!

  • michelle Griffith

    When I have put all the details in as per your picture my phone trys to verify calDAV but comes back sayimg unable to verify account.

  • michelle Griffith

    I forgot to add that then I save it anyway and go back into it but it has no password in the screan so I put in my gmail password and it comes back saying password incorrect. It is the correct password though. I had the same problem when I tried to add another email account when I first got my phone and had to use my gmail account instead

  • Doug


    1) On iPhone: Settings -> Mail, contacts -> add account-> microsoft exchange:
    2) Email = full google email address; domain = leave blank; user = full google email; pass = google pass; description = whatever you want your google account to show up as on your phone (IE “google” or “Primary”)
    3) Once it verifies, there will be a “server” section; put in
    4) Once it verifies again, you have to option to sync mail, calendar, contacts. I suggest you dont do contacts, but if you want to, BACK UP CONTACTS FIRST, you can mess with this option later.

    Once all that is done, in safari in your iphone, open
    check the calenders to sync and click save.

    Thats it! Open your calendar on your iphone and all your google calendars should be there AND you should be able to choose which calender to add events too!!! It took me a long time to figure this out, but I LOVE that it works now!!! Finally!!

  • Sherif

    Thanks a lot.
    It worked perfectly on my iphone4.
    For soem people: username should include “”

  • ODU

    This was so helpful. Thank you. I’ve been trying everything to make all of my various google calendars show up and couldn’t get anything to work!

  • SSS

    So by syncing the google calendar and iphone calendar together, it is my understanding that I am not able to use my iphone to input information into the calendar anymore? This makes it rather useless!

  • jakbkk

    this works great!!!! i setup a 1-way sync of Google Calendar with my Outlook Calendar so now i don’t need a stupid iTunes sync to get my Outlook Calendar on my iPhone!!!!


  • apple

    Thank you! After going into an apple store and no one being able to assist, I am relieved to find this. I followed the steps and found that I had to select both the @gmail account and the account in order for it to sync. But, it works now!

  • Steve

    Thanks bud.

  • Evelina

    nice article. You know, I’m using ,,Plan”. It Sync my todos on th go to Cloud :)

  • A.J

    It worked! Thank you. I just changed over to the iPhone from Blackberry, things are different. One thing I’m not pleased about is setting up a group to send a mass text. Apparently, iPhone doesn’t allow for this. Do you have a work around for that. A million thanks!

  • Chris

    Many thanks for this. It worked. I wasted a few days on this problem. You provided the solution. I am most grateful.

  • John Goodman

    Thanks very much for this – it worked perfectly. But have you ever worked out how to sync the tasks function in Google Calendar so that also appears in the iphone calendar?

  • Peter Titchener

    Really appreciate this article. many thanks for your efforts, it has saved me a lot of time and hassle. well done.

  • Val Yoakum

    Thank you!! This worked PERFECTLY…it even synced my husband’s calendar to mine. Genius! And thanks a mil for sharing :)

  • nora

    thank you so much! life saver!!! :)

  • Steve

    Thanks a million! All other attempts to fix this failed- I think in an attempt to make me only use iCloud- but I need access on google as well. Thanks for this clear article.

  • Marque

    You are awesome! Thank you!

  • mkk

    Thank you! That had been bothering me for a long time.

  • Sheryl

    I followed the directions but when I typed in the information in the CardDAV, it said that the account could not be verified. What do I do now?

  • apple/google shouldn’t be so difficult

    Thank you; it worked!

  • damia129

    Thanks, this was a lifesaver!

  • Michael

    Even easier yet :
    Pick the calendars you want to sync

    That’s it!

  • Rovin


  • Micki

    I’ve been trying for WEEKS to get iPhone and Google calendars to sync both ways with no success. Couldn’t get Google calendar to pick up events on iPhone. Finally, something that worked! Thanks SO much!

  • Jennie

    Thank you so much- a big problem for me, and you solved it. :)