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Adding contacts on ICS (Ice Cream Sandwich)

Posted: Mon Feb 20, 2012 4:33 pm
by vegetable_lover
Hi Birdie

This might not be a BirdieSync problem, more of a new "feature" with ICS. If I try adding a new contact on my phone, I can only add it to a google account. The BirdieSync addressbook/account isn't listed.

However, I can add the contact in TB when I get to my computer, and then it syncs okay. Bit of a pain - any ideas?

I am using a cooked ICS rom for the HTC Sensation by the way.

PS - if I look at the contacts list, under "PHONE-ONLY, UNSYNCED" I seem to have several thousand "Personal Address Book" listings, and only 1 of them has my contacts in. Going to take me a LONG time to clear them out!

Re: Adding contacts on ICS (Ice Cream Sandwich)

Posted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 11:26 am
by Birdy
Hello vegetable_lover,

The problem with Android is that on some ROM, when you manually create a contact on the Android device and if a Google account exists, this contact automatically created in the Google account and you no longer have the choice to create it in the local phone account... So in this case, the only solution would be to only synchronize the Google account with BirdieSync and to disable Google Sync for contacts to avoid sending your contacts to Google on the web.

There is no longer a BirdieSync account for contacts. It's because using a BirdieSync account to store contacts (which seems natural) would force you to use a dedicated BirdieSync GUI to edit your contacts and no longer the stock contact application. This is an Android restriction which forbids using a new account like BirdieSync with the stock contact application. And since a lot of users prefer using the stock contact application, that's why it's not possible to use a BirdieSync account to store contacts.

When you say "I seem to have several thousand "Personal Address Book" listings", you mean that you had thousands of groups with the same name "Personal Address Book" created after the synchronization ?

Re: Adding contacts on ICS (Ice Cream Sandwich)

Posted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 5:08 pm
by vegetable_lover
As for the Personal Address Book issue, yes, they come under "PHONE ONLY, UNSYNCED" (looking deeper, this is actually an account called PCSC which may have carried over from titanium backup I'm guessing) - the top one of these Personal Address Books has my contacts (400+) and then there are too many Personal Address Books to count! Takes about a minute to scroll down the list :D They are all empty though.

OK this is what I've done -

Uninstalled BirdieSync - the accounts were (unsurprisingly) still there, so I went:

Settings -> Apps -> ALL -> Contacts Storage -> Clear Data

And for good measure, Settings -> Apps -> ALL -> Contacts -> Clear Data

Reinstalled BS - in the settings I selected my Google account this time (and made sure contacts wasn't synced in Accounts & Sync)

Then I backed up my contacts in Thunderbird, and reset the Contacts sync in the BirdieSync Windows app, clicked on Synchronise....And voilĂ , it's all good, and all the empty addressbooks are gone too :)

Thanks again for your help Birdy :)

Re: Adding contacts on ICS (Ice Cream Sandwich)

Posted: Thu Mar 08, 2012 6:32 pm
by BirdieFan
There's been a hijacking, Birdie! :x

I upgraded my Incredible to a version of Ice Cream Sandwich (I've tried 2), wiping everything off of the phone in the process.

Ran the full synchronization with events and contacts coming across fine: Contacts in the Phone (Default) account; Events in BirdieSync (Default com.callica.birdiesync) account. All good. Can re-sync with no problems.

But! Within a day or two--and I suspect this happens after a reboot--ALL of my contacts have been shifted to my primary google account on the phone. This occurs despite the fact that in the Birdie app on the phone, Phone is Default and Phone is the only account checked.
Events remain unmolested and stay in BirdieSync.

Of course, when I go to sync with the PC, BirdieSync finds no contacts on the phone and prompts for a deletion of Desktop Contacts.

Any suggestions on how I can keep the privacy-crushing claws :shock: of google out of my contacts?

Re: Adding contacts on ICS (Ice Cream Sandwich)

Posted: Wed Mar 28, 2012 9:15 pm
by mort
It does happen after a reboot. I decided against not syncing my contacts with google and I did not even place them in the google account.
They are all created by BirdieSync within the BirdieSync account but after a reboot, they are all part of my google account. Then as well the next sync fails due to that change.

Re: Adding contacts on ICS (Ice Cream Sandwich)

Posted: Fri Mar 30, 2012 7:05 pm
by Birdy
Hello mort,

Which contact accounts are listed in BirdieSync settings ? Which one did you select to be synchronized ? Which one is the DEFAULT contact account ?

Re: Adding contacts on ICS (Ice Cream Sandwich)

Posted: Thu Apr 26, 2012 6:06 pm
by mort
Sorry for forgetting to reply. I now swapped to use the google account without syncing it with google, though I still would like a native local solution.

I used to sync from a Thunderbird addressbook to the birdieSync (Phone) account on my ICS mobile which was the default account within the birdie sync settings.
My google account was always empty (contact-wise) and I could see that it still was after a sync.
Although one reboot later, all contacts were part of the google account and that could be reproduced. I did not see them in my mobiles contact list anymore, because I had just the birdie sync account contacts visible, which were none.

Re: Adding contacts on ICS (Ice Cream Sandwich)

Posted: Fri Apr 27, 2012 8:17 am
by Birdy
That's the problem with some Android device (or ROMS if you installed a "cooked" one). After a reboot all contacts are moved to the Google account... So you did the correct thing: use the Google account and disable Google Sync.
The option to use a "BirdieSync" account was tried but finally no longer used because it would force the users to use BirdieSync GUI to manage contacts and no longer the native/stock contact app. But maybe this evolved with ICS. I'll have a look at this...
By the way could you mention the Android device you have ? (unless you use a "cooked" ROM)

Re: Adding contacts on ICS (Ice Cream Sandwich)

Posted: Thu May 03, 2012 6:44 am
by mort
It is indeed a custom Rom (CM9) on my HTC Desire (Bravo). Thank you for your reply, though.

Re: Adding contacts on ICS (Ice Cream Sandwich)

Posted: Sat May 05, 2012 7:44 am
by Birdy
Things may have evolved in ICS (Android 4.0). It may now be possible to synchronize in BirdieSync account and create and edit contacts in this account. But I noticed some restrictions though. For instance, it doesn't seem possible to display or edit birthday or anniversary, postal addresses are not split in address/zip code/Country fields and it's not possible to modify the group of the contact. But it may give a way to not store contacts in the Google account for devices who don't have a Phone account or if Android automatically moves contacts from the Phone account to the Google account.

Please, tell me if you would be interested in using BirdieSync account for contacts even with these restrictions.
If people are interested in testing this new option, please send a mail to support(at) (even if by now I cannot guarantee that this option will be officially provided by BirdieSync).
Also, if you have a native ICS (Android 4.0) ROM with an HTC device, it could be interesting to test this solution on your device, because the stock/native contact application was very likely modified by HTC.

Re: Adding contacts on ICS (Ice Cream Sandwich)

Posted: Wed May 23, 2012 10:02 am
by r0b0
I can confirm that this strange behavior of ICS on my new Galaxy Nexus.

I've installed BirdieSync on it, selected "Phone" account for synchronization and started the sync. It completed without error, added all my contacts from Thunderbird to the phone and I was happy.

Today (after a phone reboot) I've had 0 contacts on the "Phone" account and BirdieSync removed all the contacts from Thunderbird (I have backups, so no worries).

So for now, I've disabled contacts syncing with GMail and re-uploaded all my contacts to the "Phone" account. I'll see what happens tomorrow.

Re: Adding contacts on ICS (Ice Cream Sandwich)

Posted: Wed May 30, 2012 11:42 pm
by BirdieFan
Hi Birdy,

I am definitely interested in finding a way to use BirdieSync in ICS without having to port the contacts into the primary google account. I have backed out of ICS and stuck with gingerbread largely because of this issue.

Anything you can do to work around the Android "hijacking" of the contacts into google would be appreciated!


Re: Adding contacts on ICS (Ice Cream Sandwich)

Posted: Mon Jul 02, 2012 8:58 pm
by r0b0

Have you had a chance to test BS on an ICS device, Birdy? Is there a solution to sync contacts without them being hijacked to the google account? If not, will BS sync contacts in the google account correctly?

Right now I only sync events...

Thank you,

Re: Adding contacts on ICS (Ice Cream Sandwich)

Posted: Sat Jul 07, 2012 11:12 am
by JohnDoe
There seems to be no possibility in ICS to store contacts into the local phone book, they are transferred to the Google Account when they are not attached to any other account which is listed in accounts & sync.

I'm using the following work around now:
  • [url=ttps://]MyAccounts[/url] - an app which adds a contact provider
  • add a new Account in accounts & synchronisation with the type MyContacts - now you have a new addressbook called MyContacts
  • configure BirdieSync to sync with this new account instead of phone account or Google account
Now the contacts are stored on the phone and not synced into any cloud.

The limitations mentioned by Birdy apply to this contact provider, too. In order to view anything else than phone numbers and address you need to install an additional contact management app, such as GO Contacts EX for example. To create a new contact in this new storage, you need Contact Editor Free.

Other sync tools seem to suffer from this problem too, I found complaints about this behaviour of ICS in the My Phone Explorer forums.

@Birdy: Would you share a Birdiesync build which adds an additional contact provider to store the contacts locally?

Re: Adding contacts on ICS (Ice Cream Sandwich)

Posted: Tue Jul 17, 2012 10:42 am
by Birdy
A new test version is being worked out to be able to synchronize with a BirdieSync account. If the solution works properly, I'll send you a new test build. If you are interested in testing this version, please send me a private message mentioning the model of Android device you use.