I recently started syncing my iPad and iPhone with iCloud. I selected to merge my contact list into iCloud from both devices. The problem is that, while I use my iPad for my email, I don't use it at all on my iPhone. Now, if I want to call a contact, it's like looking for a needle in a haystack.

I need a way to only view phone numbers, not email address-only contacts.

I know that Android has the option to only view contacts with phone numbers (well, at least in CyanogenMod). I'd like to know if I can do the same thing on the iPhone? I am not using a Mac, and certainly don't have OS X Lion, so I'm only using iCloud on my iPad and iPhone.


14 Answers 14


The native Contacts and Phone apps do not support this in iOS. As a workaround, you could use a third party contacts manager which supports smart groups, creating “Has a phone number” and “Has an email address” groups and working from these. Note that the contact lookup sheets shown by other apps (like, say, Mail) are provided by the native app and thus will not show your new groups.

A free example of such an app for the iPhone would be Tacts – searching for “smart groups” on the App Store should get you more.

  • It'll have to do for now. Thanks for the app suggestion Oct 31, 2011 at 15:43
  • I posted an alternative solution that does not require a cusom app for Contacs, and instead rely on a workflow where you only use Gmail for Contacts with phonenumbers. Aug 5, 2013 at 14:52

The iPhone Contacts app will not let you do this. You have a few options though. One, just add the people you call a lot to your Favorites list in Contacts. The other is to rely more on searching for a contact (by scrolling to the very top of the screen) rather than swiping. I do this almost exclusively versus scrolling through the list, as I've found it much faster.

  • Another way to quickly find contacts is to use search from the home screen. I've been using it more and more and it's quite fast by comparison to in-app searching.
    – Richard
    Oct 27, 2011 at 12:12

You could use Gmail contacts for your contacts you need to email, and your iCloud for the people you need to phone. Then, switch off Gmail syncing on your iphone, and switch off iCloud on your iPad. If you ever need to email someone you can switch on GMail contacts on your iPhone, send the email, then switch it off again.

It's a little clumsy because you end up with duplicates, but that's not really a problem as such, as you can always consolidate them into one address book in future.


Arrange your contacts in Gmail

There will be (My Contacts) with all numbers and emails

Choose only contacts with emails and put them in a new group (say MyGmail Contacts)

Now you will have only contacts with numbers in the main (My Contacts) folder

Syc with iPhone

Now you will have only contacts with numbers in iPhone

  • This is helpful... but how do i sort by which have a phone number, which have an email address, and which have both? May 10, 2012 at 8:47

I solved it so that the iPhone Contacts app only show contacts with phonenumbers. My solution requires that you use Gmail for your contacts with phonenumbers. This is easy if you are an Android convert as myself. On an Android phone, your GMail directory is your Android phonebook.

  1. First I enabled Contacts sync between the iPhone and Gmail using CardDAV.

    • Open “Settings” then go to “Mail, Contacts, Calendars” (or "Accounts & Passwords" on later iOS) and choose “Add Account”
    • Select “Other” and look under “Contacts” to choose “Add CardDav Account”
    • Enter the following details into the fields, then tap “Next”. Server: google.com, User Name: [email protected], Password: your password
    • Syncing starts immediately, exit out of Settings and launch the “Contacts” app to check on the progress, the entire process may take a while for large address books
  2. After that you need to change your default account for new Contacts so that new contacts that you add on your iPhone are stored in your Gmail account.

  3. Now open Open "Contacts". Click on "groups" in the upper left hand corner. Deselect all other accounts so that only your Gmail account is shown.

  4. Done!

Now when you look at your Contacts on your iPhone you will only have contacs with phonenumbers. A good sideeffect using this strategy is that it will be easy to switch back to an Android phone.


ALL! I just figured it out! Under mail, contacts, calendars scroll to contacts and under default account switch to On My iPhone. Now the default contacts list is just people with phone numbers. At the top go to groups and all contacts if you want email contacts


I use my iPhone 5 for work and it syncs with my Outlook on my Windows PC/laptop. When I went to settings and turned off the Contacts switch for the email account it deleted all my contacts. Not a good thing. Instead, I went into Contacts and selected Groups at the top of the screen. I then deseleted Suggested Contacts. Now only the contacts that I input show up and all the random email addresses that I sent an email to once are hidden. They are still there in Suggested Contacts if I want to see them.


I have an iPhone 5s. The way I eliminated email contacts in my contact list is as follows: Go to Settings, Mail/Contacts/Calendars, scroll to Contacts and tap Default Account. Mine had 2 checked--my iCloud and my email address. I unchecked my email address and left iCloud checked. That did the trick.


One can create a smart group in contacts with option "phone" "is not set" and delete all those contacts. That should get rid of all contacts without phone number.

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Vice versa , you can create a group of contacts which has a phone number as well.


All you have to do in Gmail is to create a label for the contacts that do not have phone numbers. Put all of your contacts with no phone number into that label. Then select all the contacts in the list with no numbers; on the right of the screen you will see 3 dots, click on the dots and you will get a drop down menu with the option to hide from contacts. Go back to your iPhone and go to the Gmail account that you have your contacts on and turn off contacts. You will be asked if you want to delete from phone; click OK, check to see if your contacts are gone from phone if so go back to mail account and click on the contacts. That's it; you will only have contacts with numbers.


This annoyed me too. Solved in 2 seconds. Go to phone icon: Contacts (next to Favorites, Recent, Keypad, Voicemail) like you want to make a call. Your contacts should all be in view. Go to Top Left GROUPS. Un-check everything except: All iCloud and Trade Directory (leave checked) Click DONE at Top Right. Solved! yayayayayayaya!


Open "Contacts"... Click on "groups" (found on the uper left hand corner)... And choose "all iphone" or "all icloud". Done!

  • How does this restrict the display of contacts to just those with phone numbers?
    – nohillside
    Jul 28, 2013 at 14:50
  • actually he might be right.. he would have only contacts with phone numbers.. I've more than 4k contacts.. from Google, office email, saved within iphone, imported from my android phone. this will even slower down opening my phone app
    – MFarooqi
    Aug 30, 2017 at 15:06

Just did this my iPhone5S & it worked - Go to contacts - select groups - Under Exchange or your email account simply select contacts & turn off suggested contacts - All email only contacts unless saved that way as a contact should go off.


Settings -> go to the app you don't want to sync contacts -> switch off Contacts

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