How to sync Google Calendar with an iPod Touch/iPhone on a PC without all that messy mucking about with MS Outlook

My wife and I have fairly irregular work hours and we’ve found it pretty useful to use linked Google calendars to co-ordinate with work, our daughter and each other. I am forced to use Outlook at work, but fortunately am able to sync it with my GCal using the brilliant Google Calendar Sync.

When I bought my iPod Touch I had been hoping to double it as a PDA and was dismayed to see that my calendar syncing options on a PC consisted of either syncing with outlook via iTunes, or – wait for it – syncing with outlook via iTunes.

On the surface this might seem reasonable, except that:

  1. iTunes and all of my music is on my home laptop
  2. Outlook is on my work computer
  3. Manually managing my iPod syncing is a pain
  4. To be honest, I’m not so enamoured of Outlook that I want to fork out actual cash for a home copy

Additionally, using Outlook means that the calendars are only be synced when I manually sync the iPod, which is just another thing form me to forget. No thanks.

I found the solution to my problems with NuevaSync, which allows direct over-the-air, native synchronisation between Google Calendar and my iPod – which basically means that my appointments are synced both ways without manual intervention or iTunes. You’ll need to sign up here for an account, but it’s free and pretty straight forward to set up – just a matter of configuring your NuevaSync account to look at your GCal, and then configuring your iPod to point at NeuvaSync. In addition to  the iPod touch, NuevaSync also supports the various flavours of iPhone and Windows Mobile based PDAs and smartphones.

Oh, and a trick for young players – The first time I set my iPod and synced, I got all of my appointments, but about 7 hours out of sync. After much messing about, I discovered that the Calendar doesn’t use the regular iPod time info (found under Settings > General > Date & Time), but has separate time zone settings you can find by navigating to Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars and scrolling to the bottom of the page where you’ll find a Time Zone Support tab. I set this tu use the same time zone as my GCal and the sync has been fine ever since.


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