Get help using iCloud Contacts

Learn what to do if you’re having issues using iCloud Contacts. For example, you might make changes to Contacts that don't update across all of your devices.

Before you get started

  • Check the System Status page to see if there are known issues affecting iCloud Contacts, since your device might not be the cause of your issue.
  • Make sure your date and time settings on your device are correct.  You can easily fix issues caused by incorrect date and time settings by entering the right information.
  • Make sure that you don’t lose important information by making copies of your Contacts
  • If you see duplicate contacts, you can remove them.

iOS

After each step, check to see if the issue still exists.

Turn on Contacts and update your device

Check your Internet connection

  1. Try to go to www.apple.com in Safari. If you can't connect to the Internet, your iCloud contacts won't update in the Contacts app. Get help with your Internet connection.
  2. Try to open a secure website from your iOS device to see if you can access ports 80 and 443. If the website doesn't open, you don't have access. Contact your Internet service provider for help. Safari requires access to port 443 to push updates between iCloud and your devices.

Refresh your contacts

  1. Open Contacts and tap Groups in the upper-left corner.
  2. Pull down on the list to refresh the list of groups.

Check your default Contacts account

Check whether your device is set up to show iCloud contacts:

  1. Open Contacts and tap Groups in the upper-left corner.
  2. Make sure All iCloud is selected.

If you store and edit your contacts using your iCloud account instead of a third-party account, like Google or Yahoo, iCloud will automatically update your contacts. Check whether your contact is stored with iCloud:

  1. Open Contacts and tap Groups in the upper-left corner.
  2. Deselect the All [account] option for any third-party account, like Gmail or Yahoo.
  3. Make sure All iCloud is selected.
  4. Tap Done to see your list of Contacts. If you don't see the contact you're looking for, it's stored in another account.
  5. You can import the contact from a third-party service into iCloud.

If your device uses multiple accounts like iCloud, Gmail, and Yahoo, make sure that iCloud is your default Contacts account:

  1. Tap Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars.
  2. In the Contacts section, tap Default Account.
  3. Make sure iCloud is selected.

Restart Contacts

Close and restart the Contacts app on your iOS device.

  1. Double-click the Home button to see your open apps.
  2. Find the Contacts preview screen and swipe it up to close the app.
  3. Press the Home button to return to your Home screen.
  4. Wait a minute, then reopen the Contacts app.

Turn off iCloud Contacts and turn it back on

  1. Tap Settings > iCloud.
  2. Turn off Contacts.
  3. You can choose Delete from My [device] if your data exists on icloud.com/contacts and one or more of your devices. Otherwise, choose Keep on My [device].
  4. Wait a few minutes, then turn Contacts back on.

Restart your device

Hold down the Sleep/Wake button, then drag the slider when asked to power off. Turn your device back on.

OS X Mountain Lion or later

After each step, check to see if the issue still exists.

Turn on iCloud Contacts and upgrade your software

  • Choose Apple () > System Preferences, click iCloud, and select Contacts. 
  • Upgrade to the latest version of OS X that's supported by your Mac.

Check your Internet connection

  1. Try to go to www.apple.com in Safari. If you can't connect to the Internet, your iCloud contacts won't update in the Contacts app. Get help with your Internet connection.
  2. Try to open a secure website from your Mac to see if you can access ports 80 and 443. If the website doesn't open, you don't have access. Contact your Internet service provider for help. Safari requires access to port 443 to push updates between iCloud and your devices.

Check your iCloud account details

Go to Apple () > System Preferences and click iCloud. Make sure that you're signed in to the same iCloud account that you're using on your other supported devices.

Check your default Contacts account

If you store and edit your contacts using your iCloud account instead of a third-party account, like Google or Yahoo, iCloud will automatically update your contacts. Check whether your contact is stored with iCloud:

  1. Open Contacts.
  2. Click All [iCloud Account Name] in the left sidebar.
  3. Search for the contact that isn't updating properly. 
  4. If the contact isn't visible, then it exists in a third-party account, not iCloud.
  5. You can import the contact from a third-party account into iCloud.

If you have multiple accounts on your device like iCloud, Gmail, and Yahoo, make sure that iCloud is your default Contacts account:

  1. Open Contacts.
  2. Select Contacts > Preferences.
  3. On the General tab, make sure that your iCloud account is the default.

Turn off iCloud Contacts and turn it back on

  1. Quit Contacts.
  2. Select Apple () > System Preferences and click iCloud.
  3. Deselect Contacts. 
    On OS X Mountain Lion and Mavericks, when asked, click Keep Contacts.
  4. Close System Preferences and wait about a minute.
  5. Open System Preferences and select iCloud.
  6. Select Contacts.
  7. Open Contacts.

Restart your computer

Restart your computer and see if the issue still exists.

iCloud.com

  • If you have issues with web-based iCloud Contacts at  iCloud.com/contactscheck the settings in your browser.
  • If you don't see updates from other devices, or Contacts doesn't appear as expected, switch to another app. Click iCloud in the upper-left corner of the browser window and choose another app, like Calendar. Then go back to Contacts.

If you still see the issue, sign out of iCloud:

  1. Click your name in the upper-right corner.
  2. Select Sign Out.
  3. Sign back in.

Microsoft Windows (Microsoft Outlook)

After each step, check to see if the issue still exists. 

Check the system requirements

Make sure that your PC meets the iCloud system requirements.

Check your Internet connection

  1. Try to go to www.apple.com. If you can't connect to the Internet, your iCloud contacts won't update in Outlook. Get help with your Internet connection.
  2. Try to open a secure website from your PC to see if you can access ports 80 and 443. If the website doesn't open, you don't have access. Contact your Internet service provider for help. Safari requires access to port 443 to push updates between iCloud and your devices.

Check your settings

 Open iCloud for Windows and make sure that you're signed in to the same iCloud account that you're using on your other supported devices.

Refresh Outlook

If you recently made changes in Outlook that aren't updating on your other devices (or the other way around), click the Refresh button in Outlook.

Turn off iCloud Contacts and turn them back on

  1. Close Outlook.
  2. Open iCloud for Windows.
  3. Deselect the Mail, Contacts, Calendars & Tasks checkbox and click Apply.
  4. Wait a few seconds, select Mail, Contacts, Calendars & Tasks, and click Apply.
  5. Open Outlook.

Make sure the iCloud Outlook Add-in is active within Outlook

In Outlook 2010 and later:

  1. Click the File menu.
  2. Click Options in the left panel.
  3. Click Add-Ins in the left panel of the Outlook Options window.
  4. Look at the list of add-ins in the Active Application Add-Ins section.
  5. Select the iCloud Outlook Add-in.

In Outlook 2007:

  1. From the Tools menu, select Trust Center.
  2. Select Add-ins from the left column.
  3. Look at the list of add-ins in the Active Application Add-Ins section.
  4. Select the iCloud Outlook Add-in.

Make sure iCloud isn’t your default account in Outlook

  • In Outlook 2010 and later, select File > Info > Account Settings > Data Files. If iCloud is listed as the default account in the Comments column, select a different account and click Set as Default.
  • In Outlook 2007, select File > Data File Management > Data Files. If iCloud is listed as the default account in the Comments column, select a different account and click Set as Default.

Restart your computer

After you restart your computer, see if you fixed the issue.

Find your Contacts in Microsoft Outlook

Learn how to manage Add-ins with Microsoft Outlook.

  1. Make sure Contacts is turned on in iCloud for Windows.
  2. Look for your data in the iCloud folder within Outlook. You can also view your data in Deleted Items in your Outlook Folder List.

If you find your contact data in the Deleted Items folder, it isn’t because iCloud removed your data. When you turn on Mail, Contacts, Calendars & Tasks in iCloud for Windows, iCloud copies your contact data from the default Outlook .pst file to iCloud. Then iCloud removes the contact data from the .pst file by placing it in the Deleted Items folder in Outlook. The contact data then moves to the iCloud data set within Outlook, so that iCloud can push the data to and from Outlook.  

Learn more

See how to use Facebook, Twitter, and iCloud Contacts

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