Gmail sync issues can be incredibly frustrating for the billions of users worldwide who rely on Google’s email service across their devices.

If the Gmail app fails to sync properly, you may suddenly find yourself unable to send or receive new emails, access your inbox, or view your contacts.

How to Fix Gmail Sync Issues on Android

If your Gmail is not syncing properly on Android, there are a few things to check:

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Most Gmail sync failures are temporary glitches that resolve in minutes. But some require simple troubleshooting steps to get your valuable data flowing seamlessly again.
Tinkering with your Gmail app’s settings, restarting your device, and clearing cached data often does the trick. Server outages on Google’s end can also disrupt synchronization.

Total Time: 4 minutes

Check Gmail app sync settings

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Open the Gmail app on your Android device, go to Settings > your account > Sync Gmail. Make sure sync is enabled.

Confirm background data is on

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Go to Settings > Connection & sharing > Data Usage. Ensure “Allow background data usage” is enabled. This allows Gmail to sync in the background.

Check account permissions

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Go to Settings > Accounts > Google. Check Gmail has permission to access Contacts, Calendar and other data. Tap Permissions and enable all.

Force stop the Gmail app

In your Settings go to Apps > Gmail > Force Stop. Then start the Gmail app again and check if sync works.

Restart your Android device

Simply powering off your phone and restarting it can sometimes resolve intermittent Gmail sync problems.

Remove and re-add your Google account

Go to Settings > Accounts > Google and remove your account. Then add it again and re-sync Gmail.

An ominous “sync is currently experiencing problems” error may even appear.

Don’t worry if your Gmail stops syncing – in most cases it’s an easy fix. This guide will walk you through the common causes and solutions for Gmail sync problems on Android, iPhone, and desktop.

We’ll also provide tips to avoid sync headaches going forward. With a bit of troubleshooting knowledge, you can get your contacts, emails, and calendar seamlessly updating across devices once again.

Common Gmail Sync Issues

There are a few common syncing issues that can occur with Gmail:

  • Gmail not syncing with Android – New emails aren’t showing up on your Android phone or tablet even though they arrive in your Gmail inbox.
  • Gmail sync not working iPhone – Same deal but for iPhone and iPad users. Your Gmail inbox isn’t updating on iOS devices.
  • Gmail contacts not syncing with phone – Your Gmail contacts aren’t appearing on your phone.
  • Gmail calendar not syncing with iPhone – Gmail calendar events aren’t showing up on your iPhone calendar app.
  • Gmail sync issues iPhone – General sync problems like inbox not updating on iPhone.
  • Gmail not syncing between devices – Gmail inbox and data like contacts aren’t syncing across your computer, phone, tablet etc.

These are common syncing problems users report with Gmail services. Often it’s an app specific issue, but can also be account or server side. Don’t worry, we’ll go through how to troubleshoot each scenario.

Fixing Gmail Sync on iPhone

Many users also report Gmail sync not working iPhone. Here are some top fixes:

  • Check iPhone Gmail settings – Open the Gmail app > tap your profile icon > Settings > account name. Ensure Mail sync is enabled under Account, and background app refresh is on.
  • Force quit the Gmail app – Double tap the Home button and swipe up on the Gmail app to force quit it. Open Gmail again to see if sync works properly.
  • Update your iPhone Gmail app – Your Gmail app may be outdated with bugs. Open the App Store, go to Updates and install any pending Gmail app updates.
  • Disable then re-enable Gmail account – Go to Settings > Passwords & Accounts > your account under Accounts. Turn the account off then on again.
  • Restart your iPhone – As with Android, sometimes a simple restart can resolve intermittent Gmail problems.
  • Reset iPhone network settings – Go to Settings > General > Reset > Reset Network Settings. This fixes any network related issues.
  • Check Apple services status – Sometimes issues with Apple services can disrupt Gmail. Visit Apple’s system status page to see any issues.
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With one of those fixes, you should be able to get Gmail sync functioning normally again on your iPhone or iPad. Be sure to test Gmail in a web browser too.

Troubleshooting Gmail Sync on Desktop

Gmail sync issues can also happen on your Windows PC, Mac or when accessing Gmail through the web. Here are some desktop specific troubleshooting tips:

  • Check Gmail settings – In the Gmail web interface click the gear icon > See all settings > Accounts and Import tab. Under “Check mail from other accounts:” ensure options are enabled.
  • Set up mail forwarding – Forwarding your Gmail to another account and back again can force a resync. Do this temporarily under Settings > Forwarding.
  • Use a different browser – Try accessing Gmail in different browsers like Chrome, Firefox, Safari. This isolates browser issues.
  • Clear your browser cache/cookies – Your browser data may be outdated and cause sync problems. Clear this data to eliminate any discrepancies.
  • Restart your computer – As with mobile devices, a simple restart can fix quirky issues with desktop Gmail sync.
  • Check Gmail Status dashboard – Google provides a dashboard if any major outages are disrupting Gmail for users worldwide.

With a bit of diligence, you should be able to resolve most Gmail sync stopped working issues on desktop using one of these fixes.

Why Does Gmail Sync Stop Working?

There are a few common reasons why Gmail synchronization can stop functioning properly:

  • App issues like updates or cache problems
  • Account or permission problems
  • Background sync disabled
  • Server side disruptions at Google
  • Conflicts with device settings or other apps
  • Outdated browsers and browser data
  • General software bugs or glitches
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Luckily, Gmail sync problems are usually easily fixed once you isolate the cause and apply the right troubleshooting steps.

Preventing Gmail Sync Problems

To help avoid Gmail sync headaches in the future, here are some tips:

  • Keep your Gmail apps updated on all devices
  • Don’t let your phone or tablet storage get too full
  • Periodically clear the cache and data for Gmail
  • Make sure background data and auto-sync are always enabled
  • Double check sync settings after major app or OS updates
  • Always ensure proper account permissions are enabled
  • Test Gmail across devices and browsers occasionally


With over 1 billion active users, Gmail is one of the most relied upon email platforms worldwide. However, sync issues can and do occur due to a myriad of reasons.

The good news is that in most cases, Gmail sync failures can be quickly resolved by following the right troubleshooting steps for your device and browser.

We hope this guide gives you everything you need to get Gmail sync functioning properly again across all your devices.

Just work through the suggested fixes until your invaluable Gmail data is seamlessly up to date across Android, iOS, desktop and web.

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