I was able to do a backup of the phone using iTunes, but how do I see and access the contacts?

Do I need to import them into Address Book?

Is there a better way to download contacts from iPhone to Mac?

  • 1
    Is there are a reason iCloud contact syncing wouldn't work? That seems like a "better way" to download contacts from iPhone to Mac. Jan 15, 2013 at 22:54

2 Answers 2


The best solution *IS* iCloud sync.

Simple and without any fuss

But a simple syncing over USB or Wifi to iTunes should ask you if you want to merge your contacts when contacts syncing is enabled (iTunes>iPhone>Info>Sync Contacts)


The best way is to use the Apple supplied sync options - either over USB/WiFi local sync to the Contacts app (Address Book on Lion and earlier) using iTunes or using iCloud.

From there, you can backup / export them as vCard or inject them into Exchange, LDAP or other services. This way the contacts are in a standard / text format as opposed to the internal storage form for iOS or OS X contacts app.

To get started in syncing Contacts between iTunes and an iOS device, get your USB cable and open iTunes. From there - type sync contacts into the help menu search field and iTunes help will walk you through the setup. With a few clicks, you should be at a window like this and can turn on the sync for that device.

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  • That's what I am trying to figure out. How to "local sync to the Contacts app (Address Book on Lion and earlier) using iTunes".
    – B Seven
    Jan 16, 2013 at 15:57

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