BirthdayInfo Widget

BirthdayInfo Widget


Question: With Android 12 I am not able to add the widget anymore

Answer: The reason is under investigation right now. Searching for the issue, it turned out that some users used the following workarounds:

  • Try adding the widget by different ways: either long-press your home screen and then select the widget to add. Secondly start the app, an overview page will appear with a warning message that this is a widget, follow the "add widget" step.

  • Turning off the setting “Don’t Keep activities” under “Developer options” resolved issue for me.

  • Uninstall the widget and then re-install it from Google Play. Ensure that is is not installed to the SD card!

  • Open the “Settings” menu, choose “Apps” or “Applications.”, “Manage apps”, then choose “Show system” from the menu icon or the “More” option in the upper-right corner of the screen. You must now identify the program that controls the Home screen. It’s called “TouchWiz” on Samsung, “Launcher” on the Moto X, “Nexus 5X Home screen” on the Nexus 5X, etc. Select the one that relates to your device. Choose “Storage”. Select “Clear Data” .

Question: With my new smartphone the widget does not update anymore for the next birthday. I am running Android 8, 9 or 10.

Answer: There is a bug in Android ( that causes missing updates of the widget. Please install the latest version and try the option "Workaround update" in the Developer options. Please check which is working for your phone.

Question: It's still not working. The widget isn't updating anymore.

Answer: Starting with Android 9, Google improved the battery saving mode and thus apps are not allowed to do much work in the background. Please check out the different "enery saving modes" oder "battery saving modes" in your Settings. On SAMSUNG phones e.g.

Settings -> Maintenance -> Battery -> then in the menu "..." (Settings) -> Apps in Standby -> Deactive unused apps automatically -> Deactivated apps


Apps -> BirthdayInfo Widget -> Battery -> Allow background activity or Optimize battery

Question: After an update the widget behaves in a weired way (e.g. no contacts are displayed anymore).

Answer: Please remove and re-install the app widget completely from the Android Play market. Alternatively you can try to delete all data from the App settings.

Question: Somehow the birthdays seems to be wrong. How can I have a detailed look into it? Which data should I send in case of problems?

Answer: Install the widget, press the little triangle on the right bottom of the widget and the birthday list is opened. Press your MENU button and choose 'Settings'. Then activate the 'Developer mode'. Close the menu and wait until the widget has reinitialized itself. Then open the birthday list again, presss the MENU button and choose the new menu item 'Send debug'. Send this email with your favourite email client to me. The list will contain all birthdays that could (not could not) be processed by the app, without any names or confidation data of your contacts. But this will help me to analyse any issue with date formats.

Question: After the last update, the widget does not work anymore - it simply does not show any birthdays.

Answer: Please try to remove the widget from your homescreen and re-add it. This should re-initialize everything. You should furthermore check the group settings (see next question). In case this does not work, please contact me.

Question: No birthdays are shown (message "no events maintained in your contacts") or only selected events are shown.

Answer: Please open the config screen (press little button on the right, bottom and then open the menu and select "Settings"). Open the "Group selection" and check which of the contact groups are to be shown. Try the option "Show all groups" to display all contacts.

Question: With latest update the font color setting does not seem to work anymore. The text color stays in grey.

Answer: That's an intended feature that has been desired by many users. The text will change into the configured color as soon as the birthday of the first contact is reached. It's another way to notifiy the user about the coming birthday. In fact I got several complaints in the last days about this changed behaviour, because most users were used to the color settings. I will think over that in the next update...

Question: Why does the widget not synchronize with Facebook...

Answer: In fact the widget reads your Android phone's contact database. The idea is, that your contacts from different sources (SIM card, Exchange, Google Mail, Facebook etc.) are all joined into your Android contacts. But unfortunely most apps do not really synchronize with Facebook, they create just a link. But there are some (commercial) apps in the market that tries to perform a full synchronization (including photo). It's a shame, but Facebook does not really provide an API for that, because they want to lock your contacts in Facebook.

Question: The widget sometimes show a wrong ages (making the people the people one year older than they are). For example in December this year, 29.11.1979 shows as 32, but correct is 31.

Answer: Yes, the BirthdayInfoWidget show the next upcoming birthday. And in December 2010 the next birthday will be 29.11.2011 where the mentioned persion will become 32. That's why 32 is shown.

Question: Sometimes dates seem to be shifted by one day (one day off, to tomorrow or yesterday).

Answer: This may be a timezone problem, maybe in combination with daylight saving time (DST). Imagine someone born at 23/May 23:00 EST (New York) - but in Europe it's 24/May 05:00 MESZ (Berlin). Please check the following steps:

  1. Are you synchronizing with Microsoft Exchange/Outlook. There seem to be some issues when synchronzing dates. Currently I don't know a solution for that. Please check out Google Android Issue and and point 3.

  2. Please try to option in the settings menu to correct the timezone ("Fix timezone"). Maybe that already helps.

  3. Please contact me by mail, I will try to find out whats going wrong. You may switch on the Debug/Developer mode in the Settings (press triangle on the right bottom and then the Menu key on your phone), close the settings, re-open the overview again (press triangle again) and then press the "Send debug" menu in the overview. This will create a mail with the calendar data that helps me to analyze your issue and hopefully find a solution.

Question: I cannot open the app! There is no icon! How to run it?

Answer: BirthdayInfoWidget is a widget for your home screen, not an application. To use it, find a free place on one of your home screen with a free row (4x1 free fields). Then do a long press, select to add a "Widget" and then choose BirthdayInfoWidget. Starting with v1.3 a warning message appears if started as an app.

Question: I cannot find the app on my phone's app page, although the Android Market says, that is has been installed.

Answer: First: it is not an app to run, but a widget for your home screen. See question above. In other cases a restart of your phone might help (says Google).

Question: The widget does not update, i.e. not move to the next birthday if the current one is passed.

Answer: To reduce battery usage, the widget is only updated every 3 hours. If one update is missed (e.g. the phone was switched off or busy) the update may be delayed. The widget is also updated on certain changes in your contacts. If you need an immediate update, remove and re-add the widget.

Question: Where can I maintain the birthdays of my contacts.

Answer: The standard Google Contacts app does not allow to edit birthdays. See for this issues. Other possibilities:

  • HTC or Samsung offer their own Contacts apps: Open the Contacts app on your phone and scroll down. Edit your contact and you will find a group called Events. Here you can add a birthday or other anniversary.

  • Synchronize your phone contacts with Google Mail/Contacts. Please remind

  • Use any other app as provided in the Android Market to synchronize your phone contacts with Exchange, Google or Facebook. Please be aware that just linking to Facebook is not sufficient!

Question: The widget does not come up on my phone.

Answer: There might be a phone-specific problem. If you have access to any system logfiles, I would appreciate the input to find the problem. In other cases, I won't have a chance to detect and fix it. The widget is usually tested on Android 9 with the emulator and Samsung phone and tables of different Android versions (currently 5.x and 8.x). In case of problems, please contact me. But I need some detailed information to check what is going on as I don't have access to other phones.

Question: I just got an empty widget. What's wrong?

Answer: Maybe you do not have any events (birthdays etc.) in your phone contacts database. Check out the small button on the right, bottom corner. When selected the widget will open a window that shows all events that are stored. If no entries are present, then (for any other reason) the widget could not retrieve any events. See answers above, too.

Question: I clicked on the small button in the right corner, but nothing happens.

Answer: Yes, this is a known issue. You can either wait until the widget updates again (3-4 hours) or remove it from your home screen and re-add it again.

Question: I have multiple people being born on the same day, but the widget only shows four of them.

Answer: Click on the small button on the right, bottom corner. A window will open that shows all contacts with events. Selecting a name will open the contact database entry.

Question: I got a red error message like ERROR: invalid date ... in the display.

Answer: Currently there are event dates stored in your Contact database, that does not match the required date formats (see issue #1 below). Please send me the exact error message with all details and with which software you usually synchronize your contacts. As a workaround you can open the debug window, find out which contact is causing the problem, then maintain the birthday with your Contacts or Addressbook app again. Probably now the data is stored in a proper format.

Question: I got a message that there are no events (birthdays etc.) maintained in my Contact database.

Answer: Yes, BirthdayInfo Widget completely relies on your phone's Contact database. So, please enter your birthdays in the Contact app or synchronize it with your Google account. See also answer above.

For any other questions