How to restore contacts on iPhone 4/5/6

In this guide, I will refer to iPhone/iPad/iPod as iDevice. When your iDevice software becomes corrupt (usually when it automatically enters DFU/Recovery Mode), there is a high chance that you will lose all your data. The most important data of all is the contacts, which you cannot afford to lose.

Fortunately, due to advancements in iOS and the perks of being an Apple customer, you receive iCloud with free 5.00 GB storage. iCloud is a cloud storage service that allows Apple users to store data, such as music, media, contacts, and iOS applications on a remote hard drive (known as the cloud). iTunes, which is also free, is an older software that can be used to carry out various operations, including creating a backup of your entire iDevice.

In this guide, we will discuss both methods to restore, i.e., via iCloud and iTunes. Choose the one that fits your scenario.

Method 1: Retrieve via iTunes Backup.

1. Connect your iDevice to the computer via USB cable.

2. Open up iTunes. It will be automatically detected.

3. From the left pane, under the Device tab, right-click your device and choose ‘Restore from Backup.’ This method works only if you have previously backed up your device to this computer via iTunes; if not, then now is the time to create a backup.


  • Note that by doing this, it will erase all previous data on your device and retrieve the backup data on your iDevice.
  • If you have already backed up your new contacts on iTunes as well, then you don’t have to worry. Your new contacts will be restored along with the previously backed-up contacts.

Method 2: Retrieve iPhone Contacts via iCloud.

With iCloud back in town, of course, no one is interested in making iTunes backups these days. With a bit of care, iCloud could make your stuff way easier to manage than ever. If you have synced your contacts with iCloud turned on, then your contacts can easily be retrieved by following these steps:

1. Go to Settings > iCloud on your device.

2. Swipe your Contacts to turn it on; when it is on, it appears green. If it was already on, turn it off once and then back on to initiate sync.


3. When the pop-up appears, tap ‘Keep on My iPhone.’


4. Turn on the contacts by going to Settings > iCloud > Contacts and switching the toggle. A pop-up message will appear. Simply tap on ‘Merge‘.


After a few seconds, you will be able to see all the deleted contacts back on your phone. If it doesn’t work, simply delete your iCloud account without removing the data from iCloud, and then log back in with your iCloud account.


Kevin Arrows

Kevin Arrows is a highly experienced and knowledgeable technology specialist with over a decade of industry experience. He holds a Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (MCTS) certification and has a deep passion for staying up-to-date on the latest tech developments. Kevin has written extensively on a wide range of tech-related topics, showcasing his expertise and knowledge in areas such as software development, cybersecurity, and cloud computing. His contributions to the tech field have been widely recognized and respected by his peers, and he is highly regarded for his ability to explain complex technical concepts in a clear and concise manner.
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