AirInformation Blog

Keeping technology fun

No ical support on Android… What was Google thinking?!

with 2 comments

This comment from the Android issues list really sums up the situation:

For being such a technically advanced platform, this oversight is laughable. iPhone OS
3.0 does this so beautifully, I was downright embarrassed when I discovered my brand-
spankin'-new Nexus One didn't support CalDAV. I have numerous Google Apps
domains, as well as Zimbra servers, that I use with my iPhone, calendaring to the
fullest. We need this BUILT INTO THE OS as a basic function.

Now why is such a critical feature missing from Android?

I have a theory that …

It’s just low down on Google’s priority list because Google feels that users can should must be forced to use Google’s calendar services to subscribe to remote ical services and then sync those calendars with the phone.

As you can see from this issue on Google, this just isn’t an option for some users, especially business users who cannot have their data accessible to Google.

I have been researching ical and caldav, and believe that it should be possible to create a background service that syncs remote (non-Google calendars) on an Android handset.

It looks as though it is also possible to create, delete and update calendars (and events) via the calendar content provider even though it is still relatively undocumented.

Through a preference activity the user could choose which calendars to sync to remote ical servers, to create new calendars and to associate colours with the (new or existing) calendars.

I think that the first stage would be to support read of remote calendars (ical), and once that is working to support remote updates (caldav) too.

If anyone is interested in collaborating on this, leave a comment with some contact details and I’ll come back to you.

This is an issue that seriously need sorting out and quickly!

** UPDATE ** As yet I haven’t received any offers of help but I have started to build the ical/ics sync on my own – you can keep abreast of its progress via this blog.


Written by airinformation

February 7, 2010 at 7:45 pm

Posted in Android, ical

Tagged with , , ,

2 Responses

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  1. Hiya, really interested in your work on this – I have no java skills, but im in the same situation as you it seems – htc hero and zimbra, if I can help out on any tech bits in between give me a shout 🙂


    August 5, 2010 at 8:33 pm

    • Many thanks for the offer. I’ll keep you in mind when the project starts moving again and I need help.


      August 6, 2010 at 10:35 am

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