You can set up and sync Apple, Google, Microsoft, and many other accounts right to your iPhone or iPad!

Whether you use Apple's iCloud, Google's Gmail, Microsoft's Outlook or Exchange, or something else, it's easy to set up all your mail, contacts, and calendar accounts to sync to your iPhone or iPad. You can enable iCloud when you first set up your new iPhone or iPad, or enable any service at any time in Settings. Here's how!

How to set up iCloud mail, contacts, and calendars on your iPhone or iPad

  1. Launch the Settings app on your iPhone or iPad.
  2. Tap iCloud.
  3. Enter your iCloud email and password and tap Sign In.
  4. Tap Merge if you'd like all of your data to merge with your iCloud storage. Otherwise, tap Don't Merge.
  5. Tap the switches next to the services and apps you want to sync with your iPhone or iPad. By default, most, if not all, of iCloud's services are turned on.

    Tap iCloud, enter your iCloud account information and tap Sign In, tap the switches next to the services and apps you want to sync with your iPhone

How to set up Gmail, Google Calendar, and Google Contacts on your iPhone or iPad

If you want to add your Google account to your iPhone or iPad's system apps, you'll want to go to Settings > Mail or Calendar or Contacts.

Under the hood, Apple is using the open standard IMAP, CalDAV, and CardDAV services to handle syncing Google services; unfortunately, Gmail retro-fitted support for IMAP, and it can be quirky at times—especially if you like Gmail's labeling system.

If you want to use the built-in iOS Mail app and its unified inbox, however, and you don't have a paid account, it's your only option.

  1. Launch the Settings app from your Home screen.
  2. Tap on Mail, Contacts, or Calendar.
  3. Tap Accounts.
  4. Tap on Add Account.

    Tap Mail, Contacts, or Calendar, tap Accounts, tap Add Accounts

  5. Tap on Google.
  6. Enter your login information for your Google account and tap Next after each step.
  7. Tap the switch next to each Google service you'd like to sync. If you have existing local mail, calendars, contacts, or notes, you'll have to either tap Keep on My Phone or Delete each time you enable a service.
  8. Tap Save in the top right corner of your screen.

    Tap Google, enter your login information, tap Next after each step, tap the switch next to each Google service you want to sync, tap Save

After you save your account, you can access your settings at any time by tapping the Gmail entry under the Accounts header. If you'd like to change the description from "Gmail" to something more apt, tap the Account button, then tap the Description field.

You can also choose to run Google's services in Google's own iOS apps.

How to set up Google Sync on your iPhone or iPad

The Google Sync setup is nearly identical to Exchange: You just need to have a paid Google account and enter the following settings.

  1. Launch the Settings app from your Home screen.
  2. Tap Calendar.
  3. Tap Accounts.
  4. Tap Add Account.

    Tap Mail, Contacts, or Calendar, tap Accounts, tap Add Accounts

  5. Tap Exchange.
  6. Enter your Gmail or Google Account email and password (the description field will automatically update as your email address).
  7. Tap on Next.

    Tap Exchange, enter your Google Account information, tap Next

  8. Enter m.google.com as the Server.
  9. Leave the Domain field blank.
  10. Enter your full Gmail or Google Account email address as the Username. (Yup, just like above.)
  11. Tap on Next.

    Enter m.google.com as the Server, leave the Domain field blank, enter your full Google account address as the Username, tap Next

  12. Tap the switches next to each service's account that you'd like to sync with your phone. If you have existing calendars, contacts, or mail on your iPhone, you'll be asked to either keep them on your phone or delete them. Tap the option you want.
  13. Tap on Save.

    Tap the switches next to the services you'd like to sync, tap Save

Success! Your Gmail calendar will now sync with your Calendar app on your iPhone, so any existing or new events made in your Google account or on your iPhone will be visible and updated in both.

How to set up Outlook mail, calendar, contacts on your iPhone or iPad

If Microsoft Outlook.com — Live or Hotmail if you're retro — is your mail, contacts, and calendar provider of choice, it's easy to set up and access it right on your iPhone or iPad.

  1. Launch the Settings app on your iPhone or iPad.
  2. Tap on Mail , Contacts, or Calendar.
  3. Tap Accounts.
  4. Tap on Add Account.

    Tap Mail, Contacts, or Calendar, tap Accounts, tap Add Accounts

  5. Tap on Outlook.com.
  6. Enter your Outlook.com username and password and tap Sign in.
  7. Tap Yes to allow Outlook to access your information.

    Tap Outlook, enter your Outlook.com username and password, tap Yes to allow Outlook to access your information

  8. Tap the switch next to each service you'd like to enable. If you have existing calendars, mail, or contacts on your iPhone, you will be asked if you want to keep them on your phone or delete them. Tap the option you want.
  9. Tap on Save in the upper right hand corner.

    Tap the switch next to each service you would like to sync, tap Save

And you're done! You will now get all of your mail from your Microsoft email service to your iPhone or iPad's unified mail inbox. You can also set up Outlook.com as an Exchange account. Just follow the same steps above but choose the Exchange option for account type and use m.hotmail.com as your server.

You can also access Outlook on Microsoft's dedicated Outlook app for iOS;

How to set up Exchange mail, calendar, and contacts on your iPhone and iPad

Exchange is Microsoft's corporate email, calendar, and contact service, built on top of the company's lightning-fast ActiveSync protocol. Many companies use Exchange for their email services; if yours happens to be one of them, we've got the guide to help you set it up on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch.

No matter whether you use Exchange via Microsoft, Google, your company, or a third-party service, it's all set up the same way: All you need to know are your credentials.

  1. Launch the Settings app from your Home screen.
  2. Tap Mail, Contacts, or Calendar.
  3. Tap Accounts
  4. Tap Add Account.

    Tap Mail, Contacts, or Calendar, tap Accounts, tap Add Accounts

  5. Tap Exchange.
  6. Enter the username and password for the account you want to sync.
  7. Tap Next.

    Tap Exchange, enter your username and password, tap Next

  8. Enter your Exchange ActiveSync account settings (see your IT administrator or service provider if you don't know them).
  9. Tap Next.
  10. Tap the switch next to the Exchange services you want to sync. If you have existing calendars, mail, or contacts on your iPhone, you will be asked if you want to keep them on your phone or delete them. Tap the option you want.
  11. Tap on the save button in the top right corner.

    Enter your Exchange ActiveSync account settings, tap Next, tap the switch next to each service you want to sync, tap Save

You can go back to Settings and configure how many days of mail you want to sync, along with advanced settings like SSL and S/MIME as well.

How to set up IMAP/POP, CalDAV, or CardDAV on iPhone or iPad

If you're not using a major online service provider, you can still set up and use any standards-based email, calendar, and/or contacts service you like, including your own!

  1. Launch the Settings app from your Home screen.
  2. Tap Mail, Contacts, or Calendar.
  3. Tap Accounts.
  4. Tap Add Account.

    Tap Mail, Contacts, or Calendar, tap Accounts, tap Add Accounts

  5. Tap Other.
  6. Select the account you wish to configure.
  7. Enter in your service information. If you don't know it off-hand, you'll need to get it from a system administrator or whomever runs your IMAP/PPO, CalDAV, and/or CardDAV account.
  8. Tap the Next button in the upper right hand corner, and your device will verify the account.
  9. If everything looks right, tap on Done. Your account will now start syncing with your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch.

    Tap Other, select the account you want to configure, enter your service information, tap Next, tap Done