Typically, Android devices are fantastic at handling contacts. You can manage them, export them to an SD card, import them, sync them with your Google account (to use across devices), and much more. Sometimes, however, the cards don't fall your way and, for one reason or another, you can't get those contacts from one device to another (either the old or new devices don't have an SD card, maybe you don't want to sync all of your contacts with your Google account, or you're transferring from iPhone to Android). When that perfect storm of bad luck occurs, what do you do?
Simple. You turn to Rainbow Contacts. This handy tool will easily transfer your contacts, via Bluetooth, from one phone to another (regardless of the platform). you can also share contacts and move contacts locally. It works flawlessly, and it's free.
There is one caveat to using Rainbow Contacts. Once you've used it, it crashes... a lot. The twofold good news is that, first, you typically only have to use it once. Second, there's a solution for the crashing. The easy fix for that constant crashing is to delete the data from the device (from within the application manager, open the Rainbow Contacts entry, and then tap Clear Data). Other than that, Rainbow Contacts is a great means of getting contacts from one device to another.
With all of that said, let's install and use Rainbow Contacts to get all of your contacts from one device to another.
The installation of Rainbow Contacts only needs to occur on the target device (not the source). So, on the device you want to transfer the contacts to, do the following:
- Open the Google Play Store
- Search for Rainbow Contacts
- Locate and tap the entry by ccdr
- Tap Install
- Read through the permissions listing
- If the permissions listing is acceptable, tap Accept
- Allow the installation to complete
Turning on Bluetooth
The next step is to make sure Bluetooth is turned on. Both devices will require Bluetooth. The process for turning on Bluetooth will vary, depending on the device. I'll demonstrate on a Verizon-branded HTC M8.
- Drag down the notification bar
- Tap the service grid (top right corner icon)
- Tap the Bluetooth icon (Figure A)
When the icon is lit up, Bluetooth is on.
Once both devices have Bluetooth turned on, it's time to fire up Rainbow Contacts and pull the contacts from the source device.
Open the Rainbow Contacts app. From the main window (Figure B), tap the Easy Fetch Contacts button.
The Rainbow Contacts main window.
Since you've already turned Bluetooth on, tap OK in the next window. Next, select the source device (Figure C) and tap OK.
Selecting the source device.
On both devices, tap Pair (when prompted), and then tap Yes when the source device indicates the target wants to gain access to contacts.
At this point, the transfer process will begin. You will see the progress bar move as it receives contacts (Figure D). Depending on how many contacts you have on the source, this can take some time.
Receiving contacts on the target device.
Once the contacts have transferred, they'll be automatically imported into your Contacts app and Rainbow will report how many contacts were successfully imported (in my case, 655 contacts were successfully transferred from a Motorola Moto X to the HTC M8.
At some point, during your relationship with an Android device, you are going to have to transfer contacts. If you run into a stumbling block with the standard means of transferring contacts, Rainbow Contacts should be able to help you out.
Have you found a situation where you couldn't manage a particular task with your Android device and had to turn to a third-party software? If so, what was it? Did you find the solution? Share your experience in the discussion thread below.
Jack Wallen is an award-winning writer for TechRepublic and Linux.com. He’s an avid promoter of open source and the voice of The Android Expert. For more news about Jack Wallen, visit his website jackwallen.com.