How to Transfer Contacts From One iPhone to Another

by David Weedmark Google

    When it comes to transferring contacts from one iPhone to another, you have options. If you have purchased a new iPhone or found your contacts have been corrupted when syncing your phone, you can transfer all your contacts or specific groups of contacts using iCloud or iTunes. Neither process is lengthy or complicated. If you just want to share contacts with someone else's iPhone, such as when you are giving your contact information to friend or sharing a contact with a colleague, a third-party app like Bump makes it even easier.

    Using iCloud

    Step 1

    Connect the first iPhone to a power source where it is within range of a Wi-Fi network. Backing up contacts via Wi-Fi can quickly drain the iPhone battery.

    Step 2

    Tap the "Settings" icon on the home screen of the first iPhone. If the Contacts toggle is in the "Off" position, tap it to turn it on.

    Step 3

    Scroll to the bottom of the page and tap "Storage and Backup." Tap the "iCloud Backup" toggle to turn it to the "On" position if it isn't on already. Tap the "Back Up Now" button.

    Step 4

    Watch the status of the backup on the screen to see when the backup is complete.

    Step 5

    Turn on the second iPhone. The Setup Assistant guides you through the process of configuring a new phone. Select the "Restore From iCloud Backup" option when prompted. Enter the same Apple ID and password you used on the first phone. Your contacts download to the iPhone from iCloud.

    Using iTunes

    Step 1

    Download and install the latest version of iTunes to your computer if you don't have it already (link in Resources).

    Step 2

    Connect the first iPhone to the computer using its USB cable. Select the iPhone in the Devices section of iTunes and then click the "Info" tab.

    Step 3

    Click the "Sync Contacts" option and select whether you want to sync all contacts with the computer or selected groups of contacts. Click the "Sync" button.

    Step 4

    Click the "Eject" button after the sync is finished.

    Step 5

    Turn on the second iPhone. Follow the Setup Assistant to set up a new iPhone. Disconnect the first iPhone and connect the second iPhone to the computer.

    Step 6

    Select the iPhone in the Devices section of iTunes. Click the "Info" tab and select the same Sync Contacts options as you did with the first iPhone. Click the "Sync" button.

    Step 7

    Click the "Eject" button and then safely disconnect the iPhone from the computer after the sync is complete.


    • Similar to the process described for iCloud, you can also back up and restore contacts in iTunes. To do this, use the Backup option in the Summary tab in iTunes to back up contacts on the first iPhone. When the Setup Assistant launches on the new iPhone, select the "Restore from iTunes Backup" option.


    • Syncing contacts with your computer using iTunes may result in duplicated contacts if those contacts are already on your computer.

    About the Author

    David Weedmark's articles have appeared in dozens of publications since 1989, including "The Windsor Star" and "The Ottawa Citizen." As well as being a technology consultant, he is the author of several books, including "The Tanglewood Murders." Weedmark studied English at the University of Toronto.

    Photo Credits

    • Justin Sullivan/Getty Images News/Getty Images