Generic Backupify
December 20, 2012
G Suite

Gmail Outlook Sync Is Dead, but Google Apps Outlook Sync Is Forever

Looking for Google Apps Outlook Sync information? Check out our latest blog post which features the top four best practices for a proper Google Apps Outlook Sync

It breaks down like this: If you’re a Microsoft Outlook addict who also uses Gmail, the free ride is over. Google is shutting down the free version of Google Sync, which is to say if you’re using Microsoft Outlook with the free versions of Gmail, Google Calendar and Google Contacts, Google will no longer support the rich functionality you’ve come to know and love in your preferred desktop mail client. The same goes for anyone still enjoying the free version of Google Apps on your domain.

On the other hand, if you’re using Google Apps Outlook Sync with a paid Google Apps account—Google Apps for Business, Google Apps for Education or Google Apps for Government—you’re just fine. Google Sync will continue to work for premium Google Apps accounts, so Outlook will continue to get all the data and metadata that Exchange ActiveSync could previously draw down from your free Google accounts. Here’s a video explaining how to sync Gmail and Google Calendar with Microsoft Outlook 2003, 2007 and 2010.

Now, to be clear, Google isn’t kicking anyone currently using Google Sync out of the service. They’re just ending support for free users. So, as the Gmail and Google Calendar APIs drift away from the Exchange ActiveSync standard, your service will degrade. How much functionality you’ll lose, and how fast, is impossible to predict but your free Gmail Outlook sync experience is guaranteed to get worse over time. (Take it from a company that deals with Google APIs on a daily basis; they change often.)

If you just can’t stand the idea of using the web interface for free versions of Gmail and Google Calendar, you still have options. In fact, you can still use Microsoft Outlook to sync with Gmail—you just can’t use the Google Apps Outlook Sync tool to do it. A standard IMAP connection will grab most of the email data you got with Google Sync but it won’t sync any of the Calendar and Contacts information. The days of free unified Contacts, Calendar and Gmail syncing with desktop Outlook are over. Only basic Gmail syncing with Outlook is still simple and free. Here’s how to link desktop Outlook with any Gmail account, free or otherwise.

If you aren’t wedded to Outlook but do want desktop-based access to your Gmail, Google Calendar and Google Contacts data, you can enable the offline versions of each service. The only catch? You’ll need to run the Chrome browser and install the Gmail Offline extension and Google Calendar extension.

The instructions for using Google Calendar offline are here.

The instructions for Offline Gmail are here.

And remember, no matter which desktop version of Gmail and Google Calendar you use, synced files are not a Gmail backup. If you want real backup and restore for Gmail and Google Calendar, you know where to find it.

Now go revise your backup plan.

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