I have discovered that some personal contacts that I'd created (using the iPhone's built-in Contacts app) were created in the Exchange (business) group. How can I move them over to the "From My Mac" contacts? (Preferably into one of the Address Book Groups that I've created there.)

And how can I prevent this from happening in the future (perhaps by specifying which group to use when creating a contact)?

I have an iPhone 4 running iOS 5.1. Jail-breaking is not an option. The iPhone syncs to iTunes on a Macbook Air running OS X 10.5.8.

  • KatieK - it's OK to answer your own question and link to the other question and answer that helped you find an answer. I'd rather not close your question since it's about exchange and the other question doesn't imply that the solution works. Better to have two questions with the same answer than not have an answer to exactly the situation you are facing. Even linking to the other question in a comment here would help the site and make both questions better.
    – bmike
    Commented Mar 19, 2012 at 17:12

4 Answers 4


Unfortunately, iPhone Groups are not meant to be edited from within the iPhone Contacts app. You can try copy iPhone contacts from one group to the next using a third-party program designed to access your iPhone Contacts app from a PC.


If you're syncing with you Mac, just open up your Address Book app, and drag them wherever you want to put them.

  • This doesn't work for me because the contacts that I want to move aren't in my Address Book. They're in my Outlook / Exchange group on the iPhone, but don't show up in Address Book.
    – KatieK
    Commented Mar 18, 2012 at 22:36
  • If they're on your Exchange account, then you can point the AddressBook on your computer to that same account and drag them over.
    – Alex
    Commented Mar 18, 2012 at 22:52
  • I want to be sure I understand - are you suggesting that I connect the Mac's AddressBook to the Outlook/Exchange account?
    – KatieK
    Commented Mar 18, 2012 at 23:50
  • Yes. If you add a new account there is an account type of Exchange you can use, although just noticed you're on 10.5.8, which might be too old for built in Exchange connectivity. If you have Outlook available on your Mac, then it has a sync service built in to copy the contacts over to your mac's address book.
    – Alex
    Commented Mar 19, 2012 at 0:31
  • 1
    Also, to prevent it from happening in the future, on your iPhone you can set the default account to use with contacts under Settings -> Mail, Contacts, Calendars.
    – Alex
    Commented Mar 19, 2012 at 0:33

To ensure that any new Contacts I created went into the "From My Mac" group, I changed the "Default Account" for Contacts [in Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars] from "Exchange" to "From My Mac".

There is no functionality to manage Contact Group membership on the iPhone in iOS 5.1.

To move the Contacts from Outlook to "From My Mac", I found those contacts in Outlook (on my PC), and emailed a Vcard / .vcf file (In Outlook, right-click the Contact, choose "Foward Contact", then choose "As a Business Card") to my personal email address. I then opened those Vcards on the iPhone through Mail, and saved as new Contacts. (They went to the correct group because I'd made change in Settings, above.) Last, I deleted those contacts from Outlook, so that they wouldn't be dupes.

See also How do I move a contact on the iPhone from one group to another?.


The only way to manage groups on the iPhone is though the iCloud web interface.

  1. Go to www.icloud.com and sign in
  2. Click the Contacts icon
  3. Click the red icon with two people toward the top
  4. Click and drag contacts into different groups as desired
  5. When you're done, click the gear icon at the bottom
  6. Click Refresh Contacts
  7. In the Contacts app (on iPhone), go to the Groups screen and click the reload button.
  • I assure you, I'm using the OSX Address Book to manage most of my Contacts. I can't use iCloud because it requires OSX 10.7.2.
    – KatieK
    Commented Mar 18, 2012 at 22:31

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