How to recover deleted iPhone contacts (2022 updated)

How to recover deleted iPhone contacts

Did your iPhone contacts disappear all of a sudden? Sadly, iPhone has no built-in option to recover your deleted iPhone contacts! However, there are a few workarounds to save you the hard work and heartbreak. You can retrieve your iPhone contacts through iCloud, Mac or PC, third-party tools, and Gmail backup. Read on to find out how!

  1. Retrieve deleted contacts on iPhone through other Apple devices
  2. Restore contacts through iCloud
  3. Restore contacts through Gmail
  4. Recover deleted contacts from Settings using iCloud
  5. Restore iPhone from iTunes or Finder backup
  6. Restore iPhone from iCloud backup
  7. Recover iPhone contacts using third-party tools

1. Retrieve deleted contacts on iPhone through other Apple devices

If you use Apple devices other than the iPhone, I’m certain you use iCloud to save your contacts. Now, if you’ve deleted a contact on your iPhone, it’ll obviously get deleted from other devices as well, with the only condition being those devices are connected to the internet.  

Hence, if your iPad, MacBook, etc., are not connected to the internet, they still have these contacts, and you can recover the deleted contacts from your iPhone. Just go into Contacts on your other Mac or iPad, and there you have it!

If this didn’t work out for you, move on to the next step!

2. Restore contacts through iCloud 

Apple has already implemented a way to recover your deleted contacts from your iPhone. However, you will need a Mac or a Windows PC.  

  1. Visit iCloud and sign in using the Apple ID on your iPhone.
  2. Click Account Settings.

    click on account settings in icloud
  3. Click Restore Contacts at the bottom left corner.

    click on restore contacts in account settings on icloud
  4. Now, select the most recent iCloud backup.

    click on restore contacts tab and click on restore
  5. Select Restore to confirm your selection and done.

    restore deleted iphone contacts from icloud.com

You will receive an email and a notification on iCloud once the process is completed.

3. Restore contacts through Gmail

We’re all aware that Google backups our contacts through our email IDs. Getting them back is not a tough task if you have synced contacts with Gmail. All you need is your iPhone to restore these contacts.  

  1. Open Settings on your iPhone. 
  2. Go to Mail.  
  3. Tap Accounts and select the email address you have contacts synced with.  
  4. Now, toggle on Contacts.

    Restore contacts through Gmail on iOS device

The synced contacts will now be available in your Contacts application.  

4. Recover deleted contacts from Settings using iCloud

The success of this method is subject to the possibility of your internet being disconnected when you delete the contact. Follow the steps below:

  1. Avoid turning on the Wi-Fi or mobile data.
  2. Open Settings and tap the Apple ID banner at the top.

    tap on apple id and then tap on icloud in iphone settings
  3. Select iCloud → toggle off Contacts.
  4. Select Keep on My iPhone in the pop-up.  

    turn off contacts in icloud in iphone settings
  5. Turn on Wi-Fi or Mobile data.  
  6. Toggle on Contacts.
  7. Tap Merge in the next option.

    merge contacts to recover deleted iphone contacts from settings using icloud on iphone

If this method doesn’t help restore your contacts, the next step definitely will.  

5. Restore iPhone from iTunes or Finder backup

This method has a certain drawback, which will cause data loss. Read the example below to understand it better.  

Suppose on 9th July you have 200 photos and 300 contacts on your iPhone. You create a full backup of the device. This backup has 200 pictures and 300 contacts.

Now, on 11th July, you have 210 photos and 303 contacts. If today you restore from the backup made on 9th July, you will lose the 10 pictures and 3 contacts that were added since. If you are in dire need of the deleted contact, read how you can recover lost contacts on iPhone through iTunes or Finder backup.  

Pro Tip:

  1. Before you restore, archive the old backup.
  2. Create a new backup.
  3. Restore from the old archived backup. If you do not find the contact, you can restore it from today’s backup.

6. Restore iPhone from iCloud backup 

Restoring an iPhone from the iCloud backup has the same drawback as restoring an iPhone through iTunes or Finder. Firstly, check the time of the most recent backup from Settings.  

  1. Open Settings
  2. Tap the Apple ID banner located at the top.
  3. Select iCloud.

    tap on apple id and then tap on icloud in iphone settings
  4. Tap iCloud Backup and now check the time of the Last successful backup.

    tap on icloud backup and check recent backup

If the backup is old enough to have the deleted contact, follow our guide to restore it from iCloud backup.

7. Recover iPhone contacts using third-party tools

The last option you are left with to get contacts back on your iPhone is through third-party applications. Below are some of the apps you can try to retrieve deleted contacts on your iPhone without backup.  

That’s it!

Let us know in the comments below if this article helped you recover your deleted contacts on iPhone and which method worked better for you!

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