Why is ActiveSync so slow?

I’ve probably said it before, I’ll say it again:

Why does Microsoft ActiveSync take such an inordinate length of time to synchronize Outlook 2003 with Outlook Mobile?

My Xda Orbit is currently doing an initial sync with Outlook. It has taken 75 minutes so far and it still says “Processing”.

My Psion Series 5mx or Series 7 on the other hand will do an initial sync in less than 10 minutes. Using software from the turn of the millennium!

Update #1: that’s the two hours mark now … still “Processing”.

Update #2: … and three hours passes … still “Processing”.

Update #3: … and four hours passes by. The really annoying thing is that there is no feedback other than “Processing”. The rest of ActiveSync is working fine, e.g. Explore and Connection Settings … but is it synchronizing with Outlook?

Update #4: I eventually cancelled the synchronization, deleted the ActiveSync profile on my O2 Xda Orbit and within Microsoft ActiveSync and then reconnected.  I then set it to sync only Tasks — that completed; then Tasks and Notes — that completed too; then Tasks, Notes and Contacts — that’s completed.  Just Calendar to do now, and I should be done. At last!

Synchronizing Outlook with Google Calendar

SyncMyCal

At last! My online experience is now complete. For this afternoon I managed, using the wonders of modern technology, to synchronize my Microsoft Outlook 2003 calendar with my online Google Calendar.

I used the excellently simple SyncMyCal which allows you to synchronize your Google Calendar(s) with either Outlook or Pocket Outlook (on a PDA).

The free version allows you to synchronize appointments for a maximum of only 7 days (3 days in the past, today, and 3 days into the future). The full version (£13.50) allows you to extend your synchronization period AND setup an automatic scheduled sync (the default is every 15 minutes).

It really couldn’t be more simple. Now Jane can really keep an eye on my goings on, because if anything knows what I’m supposed to be doing it’s my Outlook calendar.

Other options

You may be interested, while I was searching for a solution to sync Outlook with Google Calendars these are the three options I looked at (as well as others folks have recommended in the comments):