How to transfer your contacts from iPhone to Android

April 9, 2013
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The iPhone and Android are two of the world’s greatest mobile platforms. Despite the huge chasm between the two and the perpetual war between die-hard fans from both camps, one can easily be tempted to presume that phone data on an iPhone and Android cannot be shared from one to the other, or vice-versa.

But, of course, that’s an easy misconception to make. Many types of phone data can be shared between iPhone and Android. In this guide, for example, you’ll learn how to transfer your contacts from iPhone to Android. (For a visual walkthrough, check out our video guide at the end of this post.)

Manually sharing contacts

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The iPhone’s Contacts app allows you to manually share contacts — one at a time — to another device. Open the Contacts app and select a contact. From the contact info page, scroll down and select Share Contact. You can share the contact either as Email or Message.

Sadly, you can only share one contact at a time. It would take some time if you have hundreds or thousands of contacts to be shared.

There are other methods, though, that allow you to share multiple contacts at once.

Via iTunes

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You can use iTunes to sync your contacts from your iPhone to your Google account. For this approach, you will need iTunes installed on your PC, Internet connection on the PC, the proprietary data cable for your iPhone, and a Google account.

Synced contacts will include the contact’s name, image, number, and other information such as the address, contact notes, email, homepage, and other fields.

  1. Launch iTunes on your computer.
  2. Connect your iPhone to the computer.
  3. Your connected device will appear in iTunes. Click on it to open the device’s summary page
  4. Click the Info tab.
  5. Place a checkmark beside “Sync Contacts With” and select “Google Contacts” from the drop-down menu.
  6. Input your Google account and password, if you haven’t done so yet previously. Or, you can click Configure to change a previously set Google account.
  7. Click Apply. iTunes will then sync the existing contacts from your iPhone to your Google account.
  8. If you haven’t registered your Google account on your Android phone yet, add your Google account in Settings > Accounts.
  9. Allow your Google account to sync your contacts to your Android phone.

Via iCloud

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If you’ve enabled the iCloud service on your iPhone, your phone contacts have most likely been backed up to your iCloud account.  You can then export those contacts into a file that can be imported into Android directly, or indirectly through Google Contacts.

  1. Using your desktop Internet browser, go to https://www.icloud.com/ and sign in with your iCloud account.
  2. Click Contacts to view a list of contacts.
  3. Select the contact(s) that you want to export.
  4. Click the cog wheel icon at the lower left and select Export vCard.
  5. Your computer will download a VCF file containing the exported contact(s).
  6. Import this VCF file to Google Contacts or copy the VCF to your Android phone’s /sdcard directory and import it to your phone through the People app or Contacts app.

Via apps

My Contacts Backup

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Apps can also help with contact sharing. The My Contacts Backup app for iOS is one such app. This app allows you to backup and share your contacts from iPhone to Android handsets without the need for connecting your device to a computer.

  1. Install the My Contacts Backup app from the App Store.
  2. Launch the app and tap on Backup. This backup your current contacts on your iPhone.
  3. Once complete, tap Email to attach the VCF file to an email.
  4. Send the email with the attached VCF file to your Gmail account.
  5. On your Android phone, open the email with the attached VCF file and download the file to import the contacts to your phone.

Bump

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Another interesting app to use is Bump. With this app, you can share contacts and other files by just bumping two devices together. For this method, you will need the Bump app installed on both devices and an active Internet connection.

  1. Install the Bump app on your Android phone and on your iPhone.
  2. Launch Bump on both phones. Allow permissions when prompted.
  3. On the sender device, which is the iPhone, swipe to the right until you reach the contacts section.
  4. You will see a list of all your contacts. Select those contacts that you want to share.
  5. A label “Bump now!” will appear at the upper-right corner.
  6. Lightly bump your two devices.
  7. Tap the Connect button on the popup dialog to let the two devices communicate.
  8. A copy of your selected contacts will be sent to the receiving device.

Video Tutorial

Check out our video tutorial on how to transfer your contacts from iPhone to Android.

Conclusion

As you’ve seen, sharing contacts from your iPhone to an Android phone is not that difficult. The process may not be as straightforward as you’d want it to be, but it’s doable. There may even be other easy methods that we missed or overlooked.

Which of the methods described in this post worked for you? If you know of other easy methods for transferring contacts from iPhone to Android, let us know in the comments.

(with contributions from Elmer Montejo)

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