How to Fix Contacts Not Showing Up on iPhone

Every time you want to contact someone in your contact list, a simple search should show their number. However, there are instances when some or all of your contact names don’t show up on your iPhone.

If contacts aren’t showing up your iPhone, use this guide as a fix. Before we dive into the different options, remember that a variety of problems can make your iPhone contacts disappear. As such, there are different solutions that you can use to fix it. Try each and see which one helps to restore contacts on your iPhone.

1. Restart Your iPhone

One of the first steps you should try taking is to restart your iPhone. Sometimes when mobile devices run for a while, they may run into issues. Restarting your iPhone will help give it a fresh start and thus may help fix minor issues you’re facing, including contacts not showing up, sluggish performance, and app crashes, among others.


Person using iPhone

It works like a charm, and that’s why the first question IT support desks ask is, “Have you tried turning it off and on again?”

There are different ways to restart your iPhone, depending on the model. Read our dedicated guide on how to restart any iPhone for step-by-step instructions. Once your iPhone is back up and running, confirm if your contacts have been restored. If not, move on to step number two.

You could also fix this issue by resyncing your Contacts app with iCloud. We’ll do this by disabling iCloud access to Contacts then re-enabling it again. Here’s how:

  1. Open Settings and tap on your name.
  2. Next, select iCloud.
  3. Under the iCloud page, toggle off Contacts.
  4. Select Keep on My iPhone to save copies of synced contacts to your iPhone. You can also select Delete from My iPhone if you want. Don’t worry; this option doesn’t make your contacts disappear.
  5. Re-enable Contacts again. If you’re asked to merge existing contacts, select Merge.

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After that, give your device a few minutes, then check to see if your contacts have been restored. If you’re still facing problems, read on for more solutions.

Your iPhone contacts might not be showing up because you have hidden some of them. You may not know, but your iPhone usually places your contacts in groups based on your connected accounts. To see all your contacts, no matter their group, you need to ensure all groups are visible.

Follow these steps to show hidden contact groups:

  1. Open the Phone app and tap the Contacts tab.
  2. Tap Groups in the top left.
  3. On the Groups page, tap Show All Contacts > Done.

If some contacts from a certain account weren’t showing up on your iPhone, this should fix the issue. However, read on if you still don’t see all your contacts.


Your Accounts settings also affect the visibility of your contacts. You need to ensure that all your connected accounts have Contacts sync enabled. To do this, follow these steps:

  1. Launch Settings > Contacts.
  2. Under Contacts, select Accounts. You will see all your connected accounts listed here.
  3. Tap each account and ensure Contacts is toggled on.

If contacts from one of your connected accounts weren’t showing up on your iPhone, this should help fix the issue.

If it doesn’t help, you should also try disabling and enabling Short Name. You can do this by going to Settings > Contacts > Short Name. Disable Short Name, then wait for some time and turn it on. The iOS Short Name feature is at times handy to ensure more names fit on the screen, but this can be problematic in some instances.


Related: Methods to Sync Your iPhone Contacts to Gmail

Another way to troubleshoot iPhone contacts not showing up is by force rebuilding them. To do this, you’ll have to edit one of your contacts first, then restart your iPhone. Here’s how:

  1. First, select any visible contact from the Phone app and select Edit in the top right.
  2. Add some new details. They don’t have to be accurate. You can add a fake email, address, note, or anything.
  3. Once done, tap Done in the top right and then restart your iPhone.

When your iPhone powers on, it will have to rebuild all the contact names and details. Once all your iPhone contacts are restored, you can delete the fake information you added to the contact above. Check if your contacts have been restored after a few minutes. If this doesn’t solve your issue, try data recovery tools.


Before you try third-party data recovery tools, we advise using iCloud first. You can do this by going to the iCloud website. Then go to Account Settings > Restore Contacts. Check out our article on how to recover deleted data on your iPhone for more details.

If that doesn’t work, you can try using third-party data recovery tools to restore your contacts. There are a variety of affordable tools on the market for the job. A good example is PhoneRescue by iMobie, which is highly reputable and works with many iOS versions, including iOS 15. However, you’ll have to spend some cash to get it.

Related: What Is Data Recovery and How Does It Work?

7. Seek the Help of Apple Support

If all else fails or you don’t want to spend money on third-party data recovery tools, then you can seek help from Apple’s support team. You can reach out to them via Apple’s support website. Apple’s support team should help sort out the issue.

Contacts not showing up on an iPhone isn’t something new. It can happen to you, but when it does, don’t panic. There are a variety of ways to fix the problem. In summary, you could restart your iPhone, resync with iCloud, show all contacts in your Phone app, modify your account settings, or force rebuild your contacts.

If none of these solutions work for you, then you can try restoring lost contacts from your iCloud backups. If that fails, contact Apple’s support team. Using third-party data recovery tools should be your last resort, as you will certainly have to pay for it. Hopefully, one of the free methods works for you.


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