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[Solved] iPhone Contacts Won’t Sync with iCloud

Aug. 24, 2017 03:41 pm / Posted by Jenefey Aaron to iPhone Tips
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Most of us rely on iCloud to backup and sync data like Contacts, Notes, Photos, etc. between iPhone and other Apple products like iPad, Mac, or Apple TV. To sync Contacts from iPhone 7/7 Plus/6s/6/5s/5 to iCloud, just go to Settings > iCloud > Move Contact to ON, and also you should enable iCloud backup on your device.

Sometimes iCloud sync seems not as effective as we believe. You contacts may not sync/update properly to iCloud. Like this guy described on macrumors forums:

“I have iCloud on and signed in on my iPhone, iPad, and MacBook Pro (all updated). Not only are my devices not sharing contacts, but iCloud (web) is not showing new contacts added from any device.”

If you are also running into contacts won’t sync to iCloud from iPhone 7/SE/6s/6/5s/5/4, check the potential fixes in this post to fix it, and also provide you an alternative way to backup your iPhone contacts without iCloud or iTunes.

Fixes to iPhone Contacts Not Syncing to iCloud

Method 1. Turn off Contacts on iCloud and re-open

Step 1. Tap on Settings on your iPhone > [your name] > iCloud. If you are using iOS 10.2 or earlier, tap on Settings > iCloud.
Step 2. Turn off iCloud Contacts on your iPhone. If prompted, choose “Delete from My iPhone”.
Step 3. Power off your iPhone and then power it on.
Step 4. Log onto from your Mac. Make sure your Contacts are still there.
Step 5. Repeat step 1, and turn on iCloud Contacts. If prompted, choose “Merge Contacts” from the iCloud to your device.

turn off icloud contacts on iphone

Note: If you have more than one account with Contacts, make sure your Contacts are synced to the correct iCloud account: Settings > Contacts > Accounts > iCloud.

Method 2. Add Gmail account, and then remove it

I got this fix from Apple discussions; it sounds strange, but indeed functions to some people who cannot sync/update contacts to iCloud.

Step 1. Go to Settings > Contacts > Accounts > Add Account.
Step 2. Add a Google account and set it to sync Mail, Calendars, and Contacts.
Step 3. Wait whether all iCloud Contacts appear on your iPhone.

Magical? Yes, it may be. Here is the quotation from Apple discussions.

“Very quickly, I had all my Google contacts on my phone (which weren't exactly the same as my iCloud contacts, since I'm constantly editing my contacts only on my MacBook Pro, and I don't use Gmail much at all). A few hours later, all my iCloud contacts appeared, as well as the "Groups" link in the upper left. I then went back to Settings and deleted the Google account from my iPhone.”

This is the two possible solutions to fix Contact won’t sync from iPhone to iCloud on iOS 10.3.3/10.3.2/10.3/10/9/8. Aside from using iCloud for iCloud syncing and backup, you can also use other alternative tools to backup contacts on your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch.

Alternative Tool to Backup Contacts on iPhone, iPad – Tenorshare iCareFone

Tenorshare iCareFone is a professional iOS data management and transfer tool for transferring Contacts, Photos, Videos, Notes, Bookmarks from/to iPhone. It is helpful if your contacts still not syncing to iCloud.

Free Trial Tenorshare iCareFone(iPhone Care Pro) Software:
Free Trial Windows Version
Free Trial Mac Version

Install and open Tenorshare iCareFone, connect your iPhone to computer. Click File Manager > Contacts in iCarFone.

backup iphone contacts

Here it loads all Contacts on your connected phone. You can edit, delete, import or export Contacts. Select all Contacts, or tick some of them, and click Export button, there are 4 options to backup Contacts to computer.

export contact

Later when you delete a contact by mistake, lose some contacts due to iOS update, or want to copy contacts to new iPhone, you can click Import button in Tenorshare iCareFone to add your contacts immediately.


If your iPhone contacts can’t sync to iCloud, you can try the two fixes we share in this article. Instead, you can consider using Tenorshare iCareFone to backup your contacts to computer in readable format.


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