Many Android Oreo-running smartphones are experiencing a problem with Contacts synchronization. There’s a workaround that’s being shared online, but it does not work for everyone. Good thing Google is already aware of this issue, so perhaps it could nip the problem in the bud before it annoys more users.
On Thursday, Android Police found out that many users of Android Oreo-powered devices are complaining about a broken feature on their phones. Apparently, Contacts sync seems to be broken. It’s supposed to be one of the most basic and convenient features in Google’s ecosystem, but syncing contact information from email to phone numbers and Google+ profiles is now a bit of a bummer with Android Oreo.
While most complaints come from Pixel 2 users, there are also reports claiming Contacts sync is broken for the Pixel 2 XL, Nexus 5X, Nexus 6P and the first-generation Pixel and Pixel XL handsets. Many users are saying that they first encountered the problem when they updated their phones to Android 8.1 Oreo. However, there are complaints from users with Android 8.0-running devices as well. It’s also worth noting that switching back to 8.0 from 8.1 does not fix the issue.
Phone Arena says there’s actually a workaround for the Contacts sync problem. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work for everyone. So if you are one of the users affected by this problem, you may try the workaround but there’s no guarantee that it will work for your device. The workaround involves clearing app data for Contacts on Android.
Below is a step-by-step guide on how to clear the app data on the Contacts app:
1. Head to Settings > Apps
2. Go to the 3-dot menu > Show system apps
3. Locate Contacts Storage and click on it
4. Tap on Clear Cache
Google has already acknowledged the problem. But it would still take time for it to identify what’s causing the Contacts synchronization issue. On Google’s Product Forums, Google Community Manager Orrin responded to complaints saying, “I’m going to be reaching out privately (to the Pixel users), for bug reports and some additional information.”
Meanwhile, based on the complaints that users voiced out on Reddit, XDA Forums and Google+, the problem seems to be coming from additional information attached to specific contacts. For some reason, entries with profile links, relationship, website and other additional information are not being picked up when users sync their Contacts.
Reddit user noisufnoc has shared that removing the additional information from entries that were not picked up during the synchronization does the trick. “The fix was to remove the URL fields for the contacts in question. Once this was complete, they synced almost instantaneously,” the Redditor wrote as a follow-up to his post in which he mentioned that only 245 from his 275 contacts were counted when he did a Contacts sync.