How to Transfer Your Contacts From Android to iPhone

Take your data with you when you switch phones

Illustration of phone with contacts on it

Getty Images 

When you switch from Android to iPhone, you want to make sure that all of your important data makes the move with you. Among your most important data are all of the phone numbers, emails, and addresses stored in your Contacts app. There are three pretty easy ways to transfer contacts from Android to iPhone:

  • Using Apple's Move to iOS app for Android.
  • Using a SIM card.
  • Using Google.

In this article, we're going to focus on transferring of all the contacts from your Android address book to iPhone so you don't lose hundreds (or more!) of phone numbers and email addresses and have to rebuild your contacts from scratch.

When switching phones, there's a lot of data besides contacts you need to transfer. To learn all about that, check out What You Need to Know When Switching from Android to iPhone.

Use the Move to iOS App to Transfer Contacts

Screenshots of the Move to iOS App
Move to iOS App.

Apple makes transferring data from Android to iPhone easy with its Move to iOS app for Android devices, which is available in the Google Play store.

This app pulls together all of the data on your Android device — contacts, text messages, photos and videos, calendar, email accounts, website bookmarks — and then imports them to your new iPhone over Wi-Fi. The process couldn't be simpler. 

If you have an Android smartphone or tablet running Android 4.0 or higher and an iPhone running iOS 9.3 or higher, download Move to iOS from Google Play and get started.

While it transfers your data, it doesn't transfer your Android apps. Instead, it makes suggestions from the App Store based on the apps you have on your Android device. Matching free apps are suggested for download during the transfer. Matching paid apps are added to your App Store Wishlist for later purchase.

Use Your SIM Card to Transfer Contacts

If you are only interested in moving your contacts and not your other data, you can use the SIM card in your Android phone. Since you can store address book data on an Android SIM card, you can back up your contacts there and move them to your iPhone (the SIM cards need to be the same size in both devices, of course). All iPhones beginning with iPhone 5 use Nano SIMs.

Here's what you need to do:

  1. On your Android device, launch your Contacts app, tap on the menu button, and navigate to Settings. Find the Import/Export setting and tap it.

    The following images show the steps on a Samsung device running Android Oreo. Your screens may look a little different, depending on the device you own, but the basic steps should be roughly the same.

    Three Android Contacts app screens showing menu button, Manage contacts and Import/Export contacts
  2. Tap the Export button. Then choose to export to the SIM card.

    Two Samsung screens showing Export button and SIM card storage option
  3. Wait for the contacts to be exported to your SIM card.

  4. When the export is complete, remove the SIM card from your Android phone and insert it into your iPhone.

  5. On the iPhone, tap the Settings app to open it.

  6. Tap Contacts (on some older versions of the iOS, this is Mail, Contacts, Calendars).

  7. Tap Import SIM Contacts.

    Three iOS screens showing Settings app icon, Contacts button, and Import SIM Contacts button

When the import is done, your contacts will be available in the pre-installed Contacts app on your iPhone. 

Use Google to Transfer Contacts

You can use the power of the cloud to move your contacts from Android to iPhone. In this case, using your Google account is the best choice because both Android and iPhone support for it.

For this to work, you need a Google account. You almost certainly created one for your Android device. If you didn't, learn how in Create a Google Account for Gmail, Drive, and YouTube.

To transfer your contacts, follow these steps:

  1. On your Android device, back up your contacts to Google. The backup should happen automatically if you use your Google account on your device. You can also tap Settings, Account, the Google account you want to sync to, and then toggle Sync Contacts to ON.

    Three Android screens showing Accounts, Sync account, and Sync Contacts toggle to ON
  2. With that done, add your Google account to your iPhone.

  3. When the account is set up, you may be able to enable contact syncing right away. If not, go to Settings > Passwords & Accounts and tap the Gmail account.

  4. Move the Contacts slider to the On (green) position, and the contacts you added to your Google account will sync to the iPhone. 

    Three iOS screens showing Passwords & Accoutns, Gmail and Contacts toggle to ON

From now on, any change you make to your iPhone address book syncs to your Google account. You'll have a complete copy of your address book in two places, safely backed up and ready to transfer to other devices as needed.

If you prefer, you can use Yahoo to sync your contacts to the iPhone rather than using Google. The process is similar.

What About iTunes for Transferring Contacts?

Wondering if you can use iTunes with Android to move data? You can! Learn about that, and all of the other things iTunes can do for Android, in Got Android? Here Are the iTunes Features That Work For You.