Over the past few days after the release of iOS5, I’ve been eagerly trying to set up geofenced notifications. Previously I wrote about the release of geofencing in iOS5, and now I’ve had a bit of time to test geofenced notifications. It seems that the process is not quite as smooth as it could be, but finally I’ve gotten it to work.
In my testing, it appears that the notifications will only work and sync correctly when using calendar and notifications with iCloud. You can’t use the notifications if you’re syncing your calendars only with Gmail or Exchange (like i usually do) – you must use iCloud for now.
Here are the steps for getting geofencing notifications on iOS5 it working.
- Make sure your iCloud account is setup online, and enable the same iCloud account on your iPhone.
- Make sure that the notifications and calendars are syncing with iCloud on your iPhone.
- Method A – Go to your desktop iCloud account, and create a new reminder in the calendar. Make sure it goes into the automatically created “reminders” section. The interesting thing to note here is that in the iCloud calendar app, there is no field to specify a location – you can only specify a location on the mobile app.
Method B – Open up the reminders app on your iPhone and click the little plus button and create a new reminder.
- Once you’ve created your reminder, you can go into the details of the reminders, and click the “remind me” details bar.
- From there, hit “choose address”. Note that you’ll only be able to choose an address from an already-existing address book contact – kind of a pain in the ass. For this demo I had to exit out of everything and make a new address book contact for Uniqlo, so I could loads its address into the reminder.
- Now you’ve chosen the address book from an address book contact, and it’s associated with the reminder. You can select whether to be reminded when you’re leaving that location, or when you’re arriving at that location.