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Sergio A.
Sergio A., Mac Specialist
Category: Mac
Satisfied Customers: 418
Experience:  Over 10 years experience configuring and repairing Mac's.
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my contacts just disappeared from my iphone

Customer Question

my contacts just disappeared from my iphone
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Mac
Expert:  Sergio A. replied 3 years ago.

Sergio A. :

Hi, my name is Sergio. Thanks for allowing me to help you. Please be sure to click the Accept button if you find my assistance of value. What version iPhone do you have?

Customer :

iphone 4

Sergio A. :

Have you installed iOS5?

Customer :

Yes I did about a week ago. I was on a call this evening and when I got off the call all my contacts were gone.

Sergio A. :

did you enable iCloud?

Customer :

no i didn't

Sergio A. :

Do you remember explicitly not enabling it?

Customer :

it's not enabled on itunes

Sergio A. :

I would double check by loggin in online https://www.icloud.com/

Sergio A. :

also, have you ever backed up your contacts via iTunes?

Customer :

no i don't think so. why did they all just spontaneously disappear??

Sergio A. :

I've heard this happen before, but there does not seem to be any real reason. This has worked for some people to resolve the problem

Sergio A. :

iPhone, go to Settings > Mail,Contacts, Calendars and select your Mobil Me mail account.
Slide the "Contacts" toggle into the off position. A message will come up "Synced contacts will be removed from your iPhone".
Select 'Stop Syncing' message will state something to the effect "Removing contacts"
Hard boot the iPhone.
After restart, open mail program and send a message via Mobil Me account.

Customer :

i don't have mobile me. it looks like they're gone forever.

Sergio A. :

lets not give up that easily

Sergio A. :

Who is your email provider?

Customer :

hotmail. but i had contacts on my phone that were only on my phone. no where else.

Sergio A. :

ok, let's try resetting your phone. This will not erase any data.

Sergio A. :
  1. Reset the iPhone by holding the sleep/wake button at the top right of the device and the home button at the bottom center of the face at the same time.
  2. Hold them both until you see the screen go black and the white Apple logo appear.
  3. When this happens, you can let go - the iPhone is rebooting.

Sergio A. :

How are you making out?

Customer :

its done. but i'm realizing that its syncing wirelessly every time i plug it into itunes. even though i unchecked the sync wirelessly box.

Sergio A. :

does that mean you can get to your contacts?

Customer :

no. i'm wondering if that had something to do with wiping them out. it connecting automatically to itunes and syncing when i get home and in range of my wifi.

Sergio A. :

that should not wipe them out though. I would expect that to back them up

Sergio A. :

did you try resetting your phone?

Customer :

i sure did

Sergio A. :

and you do not have a mobileme account, correct?

Customer :

no. i use hotmail.

Sergio A. :

and you do not use their contacts, correct?

Sergio A. :

I've been doing some research and it seems to be a common problem, but those that have success in restoring them use some backup service. My only other suggestion is to visit an Apple store and see if they may know something that I don't, but unfortunately I'm out of answers. I can open this up for another expert if you would like.

Sergio A. :

I disabled the Accept button, so you will not be charged for the time we have spent on this.

Sergio A. :

I would highly recommend maintaining a master list of contacts in some online service provider, like you hotmail account

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