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iOS Address Book Seems to Lack Certain Field Labels

selowitch

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I like to keep track of the names of peoples' kids in the Desktop version of OS X's Address Book, and it does this very nicely via Card --> Add Field --> Related Names (it provides a drop-down menu and "child" is one of the options).

Sadly, however, while the iOS version of Address Book (which syncs with my other devices, including my iMac running Mac OS X) does now have a Related Names field (you have to scroll all the way down to see it), when you click on it to specify the relationship, "child" is not one of the options.

What gives?
 
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twerppoet

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Child is an option for Related People in my iCloud synced address book. If it is not in yours try using the 'other' option to create one. You normally have to use the 'add field' option to add a Related People field (though not always).

RelatedPeople_iCloud.jpg

It is not in my GMail (set up as Exchange) contacts. Extremely limited choices, and there is no Other option. You also have to use the Add Field option to create a relation field {I wonder if you can add more relation labels on the site, and if they will sync. Worth testing, I think.}

RelatedPeople_GMail.jpg

Yahoo seems to be similar to iCloud, offering both a child label and the other option.

So, it seems it depends on who you are syncing with. Are you using iCloud or some other service?


I checked Address Book on OSX too, and had no problems with the iCloud account. I can't make GMail contacts work with the Address Book, and did not bother to test Yahoo, since I've had no luck getting them to work in Mail on OSX (you need a paid account).
 

twerppoet

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I played around with the Google Contacts site and the iPad's Contacts app. Only the relationship options that show up on the iPad will sync. Even if you set it with one of the compatible fields, the entry will disappear on the iPad when changed to something other than those three choices.

I guess it is a limitation of Active Sync (how the iPad communicates with Google when using an Exchange setup).
 
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selowitch

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Good info, you two, thanks! Thorough, thoughtful posts and screenshots are things I appreciate! I guess I need to rethink my means of syncing. Because I am a Gmail/Gcal user, it sure is nice to have access to my contacts database built in OS X's Address Book. This really seems more like a bug to me than a conscious design choice by Apple, since it comes so close to providing the full and naturally expected functionality.

Like twerppoet, I only get "assistant," "manager," and "spouse" as options when creating/edit a contact and using the Related Names field. Frustrating!
 
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twerppoet

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I don't think it has anything to do with Apple, in this particular case.

Google uses Active Sync with it's Exchange account setups for mobile devices. Active Sync just doesn't support everything you could want. The inability to have Groups (labels) sync with your contacts is another example. Active Sync just does not support it.

Apple can't control how or what Google implements, and as far as I know Active Sync is the only method Google offers for Contact syncing. I went looking for alternate setups a while back, and their forum is full of people asking for a LDAP or other standard Contacts protocol.

As far as I can tell, Contacts are give little attention at Google. It is difficult to get to them from their mobile mail client, and only the ugly HTML desktop client works with a mobile browser. It's a mess. Even the desktop client is a step child to the webmail site. You can't go to contacts directly (all my bookmark attempts get redirected to mail).

Pretty much everything else at Google works pretty well, so I've got to wonder what it is about Contacts that eludes their constant drive to improve things.
 

twerppoet

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I don't know why you aren't seeing the child option for iCloud. You could try turing off you contact syncing in the iCloud settings, then turning it back on; just to see if it helps.
 

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