In part three of his review of the iPhone, Paul Thurrott notes a limitation on the iPhone’s online syncing:
"Notice any limitations here? First and most obviously, Yahoo! is the only Web-based email/contacts store supported: If you use Hotmail, Gmail, AOL, or any other Web-based email service, you cannot sync between contacts stored there and the iPhone. This is a glaring functional lapse that the early Mac-using iPhone reviewers neatly skipped over as they stumbled all over themselves trying to complement think of new superlatives. Heck, Apple doesn’t even offer a way to export contacts from these locations in order to get them into the iPhone."
However, there’s a way around this: Use Plaxo, the online service which was set up to allow easy update of contact information and which is gradually becoming a "lingua franca" for contact and calendar information on the web.
Plaxo currently allows you to synchronise the following services and applications for contacts and/or calendar:
- iCal/Address Book (Mac)
- Outlook Express
- Thunderbird (Mac, Windows, and Linux)
- Windows Mail
Google Mail/Gmail was supported, but recently broke – and the guys at Plaxo are working on getting it up and running again soon.
Plus, you get the other benefits of Plaxo: if any of your contacts are also Plaxo users, when the update their contact information it’s automatically updated in your address book too.