How to sync Google Contacts with Apple macOS and iOS

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Overview

You can sync your U-M Google Contacts across all your devices, including Apple iOS and macOS. When you change a U-M Google contact entry on one of those devices, it will change across the rest of your devices. That way, you won’t have to make changes on each device, and you won’t lose anyone’s contact info.

Note:  These screenshots are from macOS version 10.13.6 (High Sierra) and iOS version 12.1.1. These steps may look different with different versions.

Important:   Following these steps syncs your contacts to your U-M Google account and not to your personal iCloud account.

macOS

  1. Navigate to System Preferences and select Internet Accounts

apple system preferences

  1. Confirm that you have your U-M Google account listed. If not, select Google from the list.

apple internet accounts

  1. Proceed to sign into your UMICH Google account with your credentials.​​

Note:  You may need to re-authenticate with Duo if you have two-factor turned on for your U-M account.

Google sign in

UMICH weblogin page

UMICH duo two-factor

  1. After you have signed in you will be asked to “Select the apps you want to use with this account.”
  2. Select Contacts only, and then click Done.

internet accounts contacts selection

Warning:  macOS Mail and Calendar applications are not recommended to use with your U-M Google account. They have been known to be unreliable and cause issues in the past. They are also not supported by Google if problems should arise.

  1. Enter a Description and Name for your account and click OK.

Tip:    Name the account “umich.edu” so it is easy to find. Enter your full name in the Name field.

name and description for umich.edu

  1. Open the Contacts application (Hard Drive > Applications > Contacts). Select Preferences.
  2. Under Accounts make sure that the Google account is enabled.

Enable this account for umich.edu

  1. Under General select the drop-down next to Default Account. Select the Name you gave for your UMICH account. Your contacts should now sync through your U-M Google account.

set default account

iOS

  1. From your iPhone or iPad, navigate to Settings (apple settings icon).
  2. Scroll down the page and select Passwords & Accounts.

iphonesettings select passwords

  1. Confirm that you have your U-M Google account listed. If not, select Add Account, then select Google.

iphone passwords and accounts add account

iphone add account

  1. Proceed to sign into your U-M Google account with your UMICH credentials.

Note:  You may need to re-authenticate with Duo if you have two-factor turned on for your U-M account.

  1. Confirm for your U-M Google account that Contacts only is selected, then select Save in the upper right corner of your screen.

Warning:  iOS Mail and Calendar apps are not recommended to use with your U-M Google account. They have been known to be unreliable and cause issues in the past. They are also not supported by Google if problems should arise.

turn on contacts only for gmail

  1. To change the description of the account from within Passwords & Accounts by selecting your UMICH email address, Account, and then enter it in the text box next to Description. When finished, click Done in the upper right corner of your screen.

change the name and description

type in description and change name

  1. Navigate back to your Settings and select Contacts.

contacts section in settings

  1. Select Default Account, and then select your UMICH email address so a blue checkmark appears next to it.

select default account

select umich as default account

Note:  When you add a new contact on your iPhone or iPad, you cannot specify to which email account (i.e., UMICH, Google, etc.) it is placed.

Enable Messages in ​iCloud

To ensure that Messages are synced on all devices, enable Messages in iCloud:

  • iOS:        Settings > iCloud > Turn on Messages
  • macOS: Open the Messages application.  Select Preferences > Accounts > Enable Messages in iCloud

Note:  It may take a while for your Messages to synchronize across your devices for the first time.

Windows & Android operating systems

To sync U-M Google Contacts across Windows and/or Android devices, check out Google’s how-to documentation on syncing your Contacts.

 

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Last Updated: 
Thursday, December 20, 2018