Syncing iPhone contacts with Gmail using iTunes

Monday, February 1, 2010 at 3:12 PM
I really wanted to be able to add my email addresses to my contacts on my phone and upload the snail mail addresses and phone numbers from my phone to my Gmail account so I would have a backup in case I ever lost my phone or to otherwise have all the information at my finger tips where ever I went.

This became a disaster.

I plugged in my phone to my computer, opened iTunes and decided to synch all contacts with my phone. What really happened is that my phone now contained 1,000 email addresses and nothing was uploaded to my Gmail account, even if the names exactly matched, well, they were no where to be found on the contact list.

So I decided to restore to an earlier backup of my phone. This is why you always back up everything before starting a new project.

So I ended up deciding that I'd open a new Gmail account to synch the numbers with. This actually uploaded the phone numbers from the phone into the new account. I then exported the contact file as a csv to my current Gmail account and then removed duplicates from the list. Great, one step done. Now how to get updates from my contact list to my phone? Only update the new gmail account with addresses and download to the phone.

Another scenario is that I get a text message with a number I don't know. I ask, and add the phone number to my address book. Upon connecting to the Gmail account that is newly created only for the purpose of contact management, I learn the new contact is not uploaded. Plus all the information I've added to contacts already on my phone is erased if it has been input through the phone, which is what I do a lot when I'm out, oh, say, with people....

I also learned that when you merge duplicate contacts that have the same phone number that are on your Favorite list on the iPhone, they all end up looking alike and all the entires for those numbers are the same. Now how do I know if I am calling my dad, my mom, or the house line?