I recently inherited a broken iPad which I fixed (hooray) and I have decided to use it by putting all my kids games and apps on it, so there is less risk of my daughter accidentally messing with my work and personal apps etc. and so that I don't need to worry about her breaking my newer iPad.

Other than her own apps with which she is familiar, I am wanting to make it easier for her to FaceTime a few people (mainly her grandparents) with ease. To do this, I have setup a new iCloud account, and arranged it to login using that address for FaceTime/iMessage and so on.

Everything works as expected, but my issue is that Facetime only shows contacts in the "Firstname Lastname" format, and does not use the nicknames that I have setup, or show any contact photos. This makes it difficult for her to tap a name and know who she is calling, even with a tiny contacts list of 3 people. She's not able to read properly yet, and also obviously refers to most family members as Mum, Dad, Grandma etc (which are her sort of comprehension level, she's good with M is for Mum type phonics at present), not by their real names which she simply doesn't know yet.

I have Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars > Short Name > Prefer Nicknames set to on. In iMessages I get both the photos and nickname, which is great and allows her to see who sent her a photo for example. Can I do the same for FaceTime?


2 Answers 2


I would try to create a Favorites list in Facetime.

In your Favorites, you can add or change your contacts' photos.

  • This is a good partial solution, it brings the contacts photos into play which is good. Still uses the same naming scheme, but it's a nice workaround.
    – stuffe
    Commented Jun 16, 2014 at 15:46

Building on the previous answer, you could create contacts photos that have the preferred name as graphic text overlaying the bottom of the picture, or have a picture that is just the required text.

  • Welcome to Ask Different! Ideally, answers should be able to stand alone without requiring context from another answer.
    – grg
    Commented Aug 25, 2014 at 12:01

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