Application Development

Modifying events with the Google Calendar API

You might be using the Google Calendar API, or alternatively email markup, to insert events into your users’ calendars. Thankfully, these tools allow your apps to do this seamlessly and automatically, which saves your users a lot of time. But what happens if plans change? You need your apps to also be able to modify an event.

While email markup does support this update, it’s limited in what it can do, so in today’s video, we’ll show you how to modify events with the Calendar API. We’ll also show you how to create repeating events. Check it out:

Imagine a potential customer being interested in your product, so you set up one or two meetings with them. As their interest grows, they request regularly-scheduled syncs as your product makes their short list—your CRM should be able to make these adjustments in your calendar without much work on your part. Similarly, a “dinner with friends” event can go from a “rain check” to a bi-monthly dining experience with friends you’ve grown closer to. Both of these events can be updated with a JSON request payload like what you see below to adjust the date and make it repeating:

  var TIMEZONE = "America/Los_Angeles";
var EVENT = {
    "start": {"dateTime": "2017-07-01T19:00:00", "timeZone": TIMEZONE},
    "end":   {"dateTime": "2017-07-01T22:00:00", "timeZone": TIMEZONE},
    "recurrence": ["RRULE:FREQ=MONTHLY;INTERVAL=2;UNTIL=20171231"]
};

This event can then be updated with a single call to the Calendar API’s events().patch() method, which in Python would look like the following given the request data above, GCAL as the API service endpoint, and a valid EVENT_ID to update:

  GCAL.events().patch(calendarId='primary', eventId=EVENT_ID,
    sendNotifications=True, body=EVENT).execute()

If you missed it, check out this video that shows how you can insert events into Google Calendar as well as the official API documentation. Also, if you have a Google Apps Script app, you can programmatically access Google Calendar with its Calendar service.

We hope you can use this information to enhance your apps to give your users an even better and timely experience.