Windows Phone Tip: Importing contacts and calendars

What would a mobile phone be without an address book of contacts to open up communication with, or a calendar to keep up-to-date with social events? Windows Phone takes strives in being more socially connected than the likes of iOS and Android by sporting integration with Facebook, Twitter and other social networks. But how does one import contacts and calendars from services that are also used on competing platforms?

Mango Twitter issue workaround found

Good news for those experiencing the Mango-Twitter issue we reported on earlier. If you recall, a lot of people lost the Twitter contact integration with their People Hub over the last 24 hrs. It was confirmed by @winphonesupport who has their team looking into it and we're told by another source it has to do with Twitter modifying their API, causing a connection issue with Windows LIVE (who handles the syncing in Mango).

The workaround discovered is simple enough and has been confirmed by @winphonesupport and us:

  • Delete Twitter account under Settings
  • Power cycle phone
  • Re-add Twitter account

Yeah, all in all quite simple. Though it take awhile for our account to be re-setup, possibly due to ongoing changes on Microsoft's LIVE servers.

Google Releases Google Sync App for Windows Mobile, Makes Google Contacts and Calendar Look Like Exchange

If you've been toiling at trying to find a way to sync up your Google Contacts and Calendars with your Windows Mobile phone -- switching between Nuevasync and Goosync and, well, whatever other kind of sync you've tried, take heart.  Google just announced on their blog that WM finally gets some parity with BlackBerry on this front with the Beta release of Google Sync for Windows Mobile.

This is a good news / bad news sort of thing. If you're not already using Exchange to sync -- this is good news, because Google is basically mimicking an Exchange interface for you. If you *are* using Exchange to sync to your corporate email, well, see above for other options.

First they give us Latitude, now they give us Sync's nice to see Google caring about platforms not named "Android."  Now if they'd work with Microsoft on getting their email pushed out more easily, the Gmail users amongst us will finally feel complete.

Update: here's the direct link to instructions for setting up Google Calenar and Contacts via Activesync.  Update 2: Be sure to check out the Known Limitations page (2 minor issues) and if you're on a Google Apps domain (i.e. you have Gmail but you have a custom domain), be sure to point your administrator to this link.

Ok, one last update.  The real story here may be that Google licensed Exchange ActiveSync from Microsoft, which is to say that they may use it for email down the line.  More importantly, it also helps to cement EAS as the industry standard in Microsoft's ongoing war for the hearts and minds of IT managers.  RIM: this news isn't a body blow for your push email and PIM solution, but it's definitely a slap in its face.