How to disable suggested events in Calendar on iOS and Mac

By , Nov 16, 2015

OS X El Capitan Calendar app icon full size

In addition to suggesting contacts from Mail data, the new Proactive assistant in iOS 9 and El Capitan can make smart event proposals based on information found in Mail.

For example, when you get an email with a date and time in the message body, Mail will offer to add a proposed event to the stock Calendar app. Emails from known providers (i.e. restaurant confirmations) end up in a special “Events Found in Mail” section in Calendar, awaiting your final confirmation.

Should you find this behavior distracting, annoying or downright creepy, don’t worry because Apple has kindly provided controls to disable the feature. In this tutorial, you’ll learn how to prevent your iPhone, iPod touch, iPad and Mac from rummaging through your email looking for calendar events.

About suggested events

Suggested events are found in emails you receive, but only through Apple’s Mail app on your iPhone, iPod touch or iPad running iOS 9 and El Capitan-enabled Macs. These event proposals are enabled by default after the iOS 9 or El Capitan upgrade.

If Mail detects dates and times in a message, it will put a banner at the top of the email containing an event suggestion. With a single tap, you can dismiss the  suggested event or add it immediately to the stock Calendar app.

iOS 9 Calendar suggested events iPhone screenshot 001

As shown on the screenshot below, you can review a suggested event before adding it to Calendar, or decline the suggestion by clicking the close button. You can adjust or turn off notifications for event proposals in Settings → Notifications → Calendar → Events Found in Mail.

OS X El Capitan Mail suggested events Mac screenshot 002

Suggested events appear in Mail for iPhone, iPod touch, iPad and Mac, but not in Mail for Apple Watch and iCloud.com.

OS X El Capitan Calendar suggested events Mac screenshot 003

Proactive limits scanning to mails downloaded locally to your device, meaning even suggestions might differ from your iPhone to your iPad to your Mac.

iOS 9 Calendar suggested events iPhone screenshot 002

Speaking of smarts, Proactive features in iOS 9 and El Capitan even tell you who might be calling right on the Lock screen, based on unconfirmed contacts found in Mail. And when you start adding people to an email or calendar event, Proactive suggests the people you included in previous emails or events.

RELATED: How to disable suggested contacts on iOS and Mac

How to disable Mail event suggestions on iOS

Do the following on your iPhone, iPod touch and iPad with iOS 9 or later:

Step 1: Launch Settings.

Step 2: Navigate to Mail, Contacts, Calendars.

Step 3: Under the Calendar heading, toggle the switch labeled Events Found in Mail to the OFF position.

iOS 9 Calendar suggested events iPhone screenshot 003

“Turning this off will delete any unconfirmed event suggestions and prevent suggestions from appearing in the Calendar app,” reads the feature’s description.

How to disable Mail event suggestions on OS X

Do the following on your Mac with OS X 10.11 El Capitan or later:

Step 1: Launch Mail.

Step 2: Choose Preferences from the Mail menu.

Step 3: Click the General tab.

Step 4: Select Never in the drop-down menu labeled “Add invitations to Calendar”.

OS X El Capitan Mail suggested events Mac screenshot 005

Again, this will remove event proposals from both Mail and Calendar.

Disabling ‘Found in Mail’ calendar

Event proposals appear in two places: Mail and Calendar. In Calendar, suggested events appear on a special calendar labeled “Events Found in Mail,” which can be manually turned on or off in iOS and OS X.

To disable this calendar, do the following:

On iOS:

Launch Calendar on your iPhone, iPod touch or iPad and tap the Calendar button. You will see a list of calendars tied to the accounts defined in Settings → Mail, Contacts, Calendars.

Now deselect “Events Found in Mail” under the Other sub-section.

iOS 9 Calendar suggested events iPhone screenshot 004

On OS X:

Launch Calendar on your Mac with El Capitan or later, choose Preferences from the menu, click the General tab and uncheck the box labeled “Show Found in Mail calendar.”

OS X El Capitan Calendar suggested events Mac screenshot 004

When you disable “Events Found in Mail”, its containing items will be hidden from your view but not deleted unless you have disabled Mail event suggestions.

Confirming proposed events from known providers

Events in Mail from known providers such as Expedia or Open Table get automatically put on your Events Found in Mail calendar, but remain tentative until confirmed.

Do confirm a tentative event proposal in Calendar, do the following:

Step 1: Launch Calendar of iOS or OS X and find the proposed event at the proposed date and time. Tap or double-click the event proposal to bring up the info screen.

Step 2: Select the Notifications button in the toolbar.

Step 3: Find the proposed event under “Found in Mail” in the notifications list.

Step 4: Choose Add to Calendar or Ignore to remove the proposed event.

More on calendar events in Mail

If you have an Exchange account, you can reply to invitations sent from Calendar, Outlook or Outlook Web Access. Choosing Accept, Decline or Maybe in the banner at the top of the email will also add the event to Calendar.

“Mail sends your reply to the event organizer and updates your calendar on the Exchange server and in Calendar, when it syncs with the server,” notes Apple.

To view the invitation directly in Calendar, hit the Calendar button in the banner. As a cherry on top, iOS and El Capitan feature so-called smart data detectors designed to turn pieces of text into actionable links.

For instance, if an mail contains a phrase like “lunch tomorrow at 2pm,” Mail turns it into a tappable hyperlink for instantly adding the event to your Calendar.

In Mail for Mac, these actionable links are more subdued: move the pointer over a date or time in the message and an outline appears around the information. Now click the arrow icon to bring up a pop-up panel, then choose Add to Calendar.

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