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Having read the answers to Is it better for iOS to sync Gmail contacts using Exchange ActiveSync or the CardDAV protocol?, I switched off Contacts on the Exchange account, and set up CardDAV following Google instructions. Google is set as the default account on the iPhone. I have nearly instantaneous updates from the iPhone to Google. But I've waited a couple of hours and have yet to see a new contact and an update to an existing contact that I made via web Gmail show up on the phone. Is there a setting I'm missing? Per Google help, I already checked that the Account is on, and that I am using SSL. I'm on iOS 6.0.

Well, seven hours later I have the updates on the phone. Is this the norm?

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To be clear - you had a one-time seven hour delay or is this something that you can reproduce and get a seven hour delay on all contacts? –  bmike Nov 29 '12 at 15:23
    
I had a one-time seven hour delay, then had other issues with contacts not syncing at all. I reset the iPhone, and it immediately synced all the missing contacts. I haven't had any problems since. –  Alice Nov 30 '12 at 0:07
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2 Answers

My understanding is that CardDAV does not push changes from server to clients, but rather requires that clients poll the server. Perhaps you have polling turned off?

  1. Launch Settings.
  2. Select Mail, Contacts, Calendars.
  3. Select Fetch New Data.
  4. Under the Fetch heading, is Manually selected? If so, then your phone is not automatically checking for updates.
  5. Select Advanced.
  6. Find your Google CardDAV account in this list. Is it set to Fetch or Manual? If the latter, then your phone is not automatically checking for updates.
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This is not normal. I just set up Google CardDav on my iPhone 4. I was adding a contact to Google that was already in my iPhone. While I was reading the info off my phone and typing it into Gmail, it showed up immediately on my phone.

I can't tell you why your contacts are not updating immediately, but it is definitely not normal.

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