Google Account Sync

We're nearing the end of 2012, and that means Google is doing some "winter cleaning" around the office and some less-popular services are going away. Google will be shutting down several services related to sync and calendar, all within the next month. First, several Google Calendar features are going away -- reservable times can no longer be created in appointment slots, but currently set slots will remain for one year. Two calendar "labs" features are going away as well: "Smart Rescheduler" and "Add gadget by URL." Google is also removing features that let users check and make appointments via SMS. 

Next, traditional Google Sync is going away -- this was the protocol that let users sync their mail, contacts and calendar to devices via the Exchange ActiveSync protocol. With the introduction of CardDAV and CalDav, Google can now offer much the same service with the IMAP protocol instead. Google Sync will shut down to new users on January 30, 2013, but will remain active for anyone that sets it up prior and all Google Apps users.

It sounds like a doomsday scenario of Google services getting shut down, but most users won't notice. Android syncs natively with Google Apps and therefore won't be affected by the Google Sync shutdown. You may want to take a look if you happen to use any of these Google Calendar tools, though.

Source: Google Official Blog


Reader comments

Google 'winter cleaning' is coming, Google Sync and Calendar features are going away


Well, since iOS6 Calendar seems to have broken some functions with Google Exchange sync, and Android sync natively, it seems like no great loss.

Never tried the functions from the lab.

"Android syncs natively with Google Apps and therefore won't be affected by the Google Sync shutdown. You may want to take a look if you happen to use any of these Google Calendar tools, though."

So us Android users won't be affected by it and my guess this change only goes with third party apps and services.
And they are doing this because Exchange ActiveSync is a protocol owned by Microsoft so they are switching to Open protocols.

Anyway hit the Source link for more info. =)

Microsoft has never asserted a intellectual property claim to Exchange Activesync, because its basically a repackaged Imap IDLED agent. It uses basic TCP/IP sockets to be notified of changes to the calendar.

Google is consolidating all services under one imap socket. So a single connection to Google will alert your device to email, calendar, task, G+ changes.

I have not proof to reference, but I am pretty sure part of the "license fees" to Microsoft are for the use of Exchange ActiveSync, which is why pretty much all OEM's pay Microsoft.

This is a good thing for Google to get rid of it.

My observation is Google is tipping me closer to Windows Phone and much to my dismay, Windows 8. For work I use Outlook exclusively, syncing my phone (Note 2) via Calendar Sync. Will now require an alternative. :(

Luckily for you there are lots of Alternatives. This is simply one of them. Outlook can sync via many methods.

This will not impact your phone. This is related to syncing your desktop Outlook to Google. There appears to be a new alternative, but it remains to be seen if this will be workable for me or not.

Snip from the Google Sync web site:
Google Sync was designed to allow access to Gmail, Google Calendar, and Contacts via the Microsoft® Exchange ActiveSync® protocol.

My understanding is that all new OSes have a native google client to sync with the google services except IOS and only for contacts. Therefore you had to use exchange for contact sync on an iPhone. But there is workaround for that too, using cardDAV. So no big change after all unless you are on a blackberry and don't have BIS.

Windows Phone doesn't support CardDav or CalDav, so WP users that use gmail will be screwed. Don't expect MS to sit still for this, game on!

I don't quite understand what feature they are talking about here...? Reserving time in an appointment slot? Can someone please explain?

iPhone and most non-Android phones do not natively support push GMail, push Google Calendar, or push Google Contacts. To get those things to push in the past on those phones, you had to set up your Google account as if it were an Exchange account. Google since introduced CardDAV for syncing Calendar and Contacts, and its iOS GMail app really became superb. If you have an Android phone, this won't affect anything. The only people in the lurch are WP users since there is no support for CardDAV on WP and no GMail WP app.

I understand that part. I don't know what they mean about reserving time within an appointment slot, or whatever they said. I use Google Calendar a lot but don't know what they're talking about.

This has probably been in the works for a while now. There used to be a trick where you could get facebook photos on an Android device for your contacts by setting up your Google account as an exchange account on an iPhone or iPod touch and syncing Facebook there. That little trick simply stopped working about a year ago.

I don't understand what is suppose to happen to the syncing features mentioned in this article. After reading some of the comments, I feel that some of the readers do not understand either. I wish that author will elaborate more about exactly what features are being taken away and who this affects most.