Android

Pro tip: Migrate all of your Android contacts to Google

Jack Wallen walks you through the process of migrating your contacts from your phone's local storage to your Google account.

 

Migrate Android contacts
 

If you have multiple Android devices or you’re planning on purchasing a new smartphone in the near future, you know that all of your Google contacts will be viewable by any Android device you associate with your Google account. But what about those contacts isolated to your phone’s local storage? Since those aren’t stored in your Google cloud, they won’t be available to other devices. So, how do you solve that conundrum?

Easy... you migrate you contacts from the local storage to your Google account. I’ll show you how to do that in two easy steps.

Note: This pro tip assumes that you have a device associated with a Google account and it contains a number of contacts on the local storage.

Step 1: Export

Follow these steps to export your contacts:

  1. Open the Contacts app (on some devices, such as the Moto X, it may be labeled People)
  2. Tap the app’s menu button (this will either be the device menu button, such as with the Samsung Galaxy S4, or the overflow menu, which is denoted by three vertical dots)
  3. Tap Import/Export
  4. Tap Export to SD card (if an SD card does not exist, tap Export to USB storage -- Figure A)

Figure A

 

Figure A
 

Exporting contacts from a Verizon-branded Samsung Galaxy S4.

Step 2: Import

The next step is to import the newly created vCard from the SD card (or USB storage) into your Google account. Here’s how:

  1. Open the Contacts app
  2. Tap the app’s menu button
  3. Tap Import/Export
  4. Tap Import
  5. Tap Google
  6. Select Import vCard file, and tap OK
  7. If you have multiple vCard files in the location selected, you’ll have to select which vCard file to import -- Figure B)
  8. Tap OK
  9. Allow the import to complete

Figure B

Figure B
Select the correct vCard for importing.

You should now have all of your contacts stored on your Google account. Every device associated with that account will have access to those contacts.

Have you found a better solution for syncing contacts across multiple devices? What about syncing between iOS and Android devices? Share your solution(s) in the discussion thread below.

 

 

About

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 getjackd.net.

14 comments
Bubuddd
Bubuddd

That was the most fantastic solution ever.  I have a broken screen, used Droid Screen to see what I was doing, now I have all my contacts backed up.

hrtu76y876idh
hrtu76y876idh

If you're looking to transfer Android Contacts to Computer, iPubsoft Android Desktop Manager is the best choice which lets you do it in just a few easy steps. It is trustworthy software designed to easily transfer contacts from Android to computer directly. All contacts information will be merged perfectly. Moreover, it not only a simple Android Contacts to PC Transfer, but also an Amazingly Android Contacts manager.

http://www.transfer-text-messages-from-phone-to-computer.com/how-to/backup-android-contacts-to-computer.html

cpguru21
cpguru21

I have to say migrating users of Apple computers to android was a dream using Google Contacts.  Compared to the new iPhones I received and migrating from iPhone 5 to 5s and waiting an hour for each new phone to download the latest update (due to apple throttling) before I could restore from a backup.  


The iPhone to Android phone migrations went unexpectedly easy and quick.  I understand the "big brother" and "spying" concerns, but we migrated to Google for calendar sharing specifically to be cross platform compatible.

Scalloway1
Scalloway1

@ eaglewolf 

Click "Back to newest" on the left above  "This comment is no longer visible." This will reveal the comments again. Why this done now I have no idea either.

eaglewolf
eaglewolf

Just wondering why the posted comments disappeared:

"This comment is no longer visible."

Is this the action of Mr. Wallen or Tech Republic?   I thought this was an open forum where comments were welcome - on both sides.   Yes, this article is a good 'how to,' but the questions raised were 'why would you want to do that?' ..given the privacy concerns with Google that are extremely well-known.

Curious.

Gisabun
Gisabun

Yeeesh. Who'd want to do that with all the privacy issues. :-)

eaglewolf
eaglewolf

@Gisabun

Agreed.  I can't imagine anyone freely handing Google all their contact lists - especially since so many users add all sorts of personal information to a listing:  home, work, phones, fax, additional emails, family - yours and your friends' - with birthdays, anniversaries, etc.  A gold mine for Google.

Be interesting to create a few 'extra' free accounts that you never use.  Then see how fast these emails are directly marketed to or receive spam.   Or 'recommendations' of things you just can't live without.

Very bad idea.

SES21
SES21

@eaglewolf @GisabunI actually have a few of those "extra" accounts & none of them really get any spam to speak of...even the ones that are in those common ranges that spammers always use. You know abc1, abc2, abc3, etc. Sure, those get a few here & there but I chalk that up to the spammers themselves, not to anything nefarious on Google's part, especially since the same user names on other providers typically attract equal or more spam.


So, who do you trust your data to &, if you don't, how often do you back it up & how?

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