Last night I updated my I/O Nexus 9 to Android M and as I was getting things configured I saw this … Which is a pretty magic moment for app login! My Chrome sync had brought my login to the app which was just ready to go as soon as it loaded. Very cool!
This morning I removed / de-auth’d at least 70 services / accounts that had had access to my Google Account over who knows how long. I removed and reset my account access on the various androids and we are now fully back in business. I hadn’t quite gone this extreme earlier in the week and my other devices were still having some challenges even though the Nexus 5 and Glass were rocking along.
If you’ve regularly connected to things for testing or actual use over the years, I can’t recommend this enough. After my nightmare of a lock-out over the past week, this seems to be the cleanest way back in. The good news is that you don’t lose any data … you just adjust your access to it momentarily.
Sync is a wonderful thing. But when it doesn’t work … whoa.
My day started last night actually after midnight as the Nexus 5 (active only for a few hours) decided to freak out. I was suddenly unable to login to Google+ or Hangouts. Google sync started to freak as well with inconsistent sync to Calendar and a bunch of other things.
This morning I fought the phone a bit before finally conceding to a full hard reset at lunch wiping the phone for a fresh start. Sadly as soon as it started back up hangouts prompted with its error and G+ continued to block me. Sigh. No resolution. I spent a bit actually speaking to Google tech support (yes, it exists!) But they were fully stumped as well. I’ll have to wait 24-48 hours apparently for a response and a potentially new device.
Thinking about other options to try and triage the problem I decided to change my account password which sent Chrome on my Mac, Google Glass (more to come) and my other devices into a tizzy. Glass only sorta connected back to my phone, required a reset as well (my guess) and then my other phone (N4) and tablet (N7) got all outta whack due to the account change. Now none want to connect appropriately and I seem to have lost app-based access to hangouts and Google+ on everything. Before I left work for the week the web worked and I’ll try again at home but on the train each device has seemingly lost it’s desire to stay connected. Oh and Google Now seems dead on the Nexus 5.
I’m at a loss. I thought this was some sort of device issue bit now it’s propagated across a few others making me think my Google account has partially corrupted. WTF.
In case you missed the update or perhaps don’t use the app, Google updated their GMail iOS app to 2.0 today. I updated mine and have decided to give it a more permanent go vs the exchange push I’ve had running in the mail.app. Notifications work great and you get the richer power of Gmail … give it a look!
The new GMail, much like the Google search application, provides connectivity to the web when you click links instead of linking out to the device’s Safari browser. This is a major opportunity to show the power of sync and connected accounts – something Google gets better than most. In the case of the app, however there is no obvious connectivity …
In Chrome when I click a link to a site where I need to login the browser like all modern browsers asks if it can save my credentials and other helpful data to assist in future connections. I use this all the time and even use LastPass to enhance the capabilities. Beyond simply saving my password data and syncing across multiple machines, Chrome actually syncs my extensions, history and tabs as well. Getting a new computer means I just have to login to have everything neatly restored … which brings me back to the GMail app.
I know the Gmail app is not designed or intended to be an uber app, but it does link into what appears to be Chrome while I’m signed in to my account. I’m looking at Google to connect the dots and enable easy access to any site via a link I might click in mail. If I have to login to every site (at least once) I’m going to be less likely to want to stick with the GMail app and instead switch back over to Mail which is linked to Safari and where I’ve already gone through this “pain” over time.
There are very few companies that can do this. Apple certainly hasn’t shown any real strength in connected synchronized services. Contact and Calendar sync has been a mess since the beginning and iTunes Match is a very mixed bag. Google excels in this and should really push it forward … hard.
I guess I knew about this, but had yet to consider why I’d want to switch my Gmail config over to Google Sync. 5 minutes later I can assure you that it’s the right move.
Thanks to Business Insider’s quick guide, you can setup sync for Mail, Calendar and Contacts which has immediately reconciled my years of .Mac BS sync conflicts and duplications in contacts and added a multi-calendar view as well. Mail remains the same …
With the addition of Google+, I’m deep in Google services and this just keeps it all nicely together. And no I don’t have any invites at the moment unfortunately …
It’s honestly been a while since I’ve actively explored iTunes or tried to solve syncing media in the house so this feature may have existed for a bit. Tonight however, I was setting up a new machine and activated home sharing and then clicked into the settings (bottom right in iTunes from within home sharing).
As you can see there’s a handy option to automatically transfer new purchases between machines … While I wouldn’t want to have my full collection floating around on multiple devices based on the size, it is nice to have the option to capture the updates. I just purchased the new Alexander album on my main machine and I can see each track is syncing over as the initial download completes. Very cool.
I’ve had this post from Fred Wilson bookmarked since this morning and I’m finally getting back around to formalizing a few thoughts. First the notion of content shifting is something I’ve been thinking about a lot lately. As someone who works on multiple devices (sometimes concurrently) keeping things (and myself actually) in sync is not so simple. Beyond just the basics, the actual content consuption bits from my digital adventures are really the parts I’m interested in connecting as I move between locations and contexts.
While I don’t have everything sorted just yet, one thing I’ve been really keen on lately is Pinboard. I discovered Pinboard during the del.icio.us is closing chaos and am really pleased I did because it is an incredibly powerful, yet also very simple tool. It’s not perfect in replacing delicious sharing for me, but it’s making up for things with some new features considerably. The best thing Pinboard does is capture all my shared links from Twitter, Google Reader, and Instapaper in addition to backing up my delicious bookmarks and of course saving any new ones. This auto-collection process makes it dead simple for me to manage my reading and really has been awesome for making sure I know where all my links have gone. I can call stuff up or save more from within Chrome via extension, on iPhone with Delibar or bookmarklet and on Android with PinDroid. This is far more around my collection rather than consumption of content, though one additional feature Pindroid and instapaper manage is what’s been read vs unread. I can’t say I use that much as I’m just happy to have a simple point of capture, but it’s worth noting …
On the media consumption side of things, Netflix is really the only service I’ve seen that enables stopping and resuming between devices on your account and this has been great for my family and our small army of iDevices.
I’ve yet to find a good music solution for resume … Rdio comes close with the browser player, but as best as I can tell, you can’t pick an album or playlist up where you left it. Pandora definitely doesn’t work that way at all …
Kindle is pretty bulletproof for books and something I love, but there’s still a lot of room to improve across other content types.