How to find, merge, and delete duplicate contacts on iPhone

By , Feb 25, 2014

Cleaner Pro 1With technology these days, it gets harder and harder to keep track of all of your friends and families’ various contacts. You may have one friend whom you mainly communicate with through Facebook, but you know their phone number. You just can’t remember where you put it. Maybe your mom recently moved and you gave her a new contact card because you were in a hurry and didn’t want to track down the original. Which card has the right number?

If you find yourself bogged down with too many contacts and want to clear out your figurative drawers, we’ve got a quick tip for taking care of duplicate contacts that doesn’t involve deleting them, one at a time.

In this post, we will show you how to find duplicate contacts, and how to merge or delete them directly from your iPhone…

The best, most efficient way to reorganize your contacts is by using a third-party app that does all of the hard work for you. Cleaner Pro is a great app for such a thing. We’re going to use it for this tutorial. Note that there are many other options for finding and merging contacts on your iPhone, but this is one that worked well for us. At the bottom of this post, we’ve listed other apps that will let you easily merge duplicate contacts on your iPhone.

How to find duplicate contacts

Cleaner Pro 2The first thing you will need to do is figure out which names, phone numbers, and addresses are duplicates. With Cleaner Pro, it takes just a few simple steps. This app will find duplicate contacts, find numbers without names, emails without names, and names with no phone or email address. It will even track down contacts with similar names, so if you added Mary Smith in one place and M Smith in another, the app will tag them as duplicates so you can merge them.

All you have to do to find your duplicate contact details is to launch the application and let it access your contacts. All duplicate data will be clearly sorted by category (ie. duplicate phones, emails etc).

How to merge duplicate contacts on iPhone

Cleaner Pro 5Step 1: Back up your current contacts list. Tap the “Backup” button to save a file of your contacts before you get started. If something happens, you’ll have a copy that you can import back into your device. The app will save three files, one for iCloud, one for your device, and one for Facebook contacts. You can email the files to yourself or save them in a compatible app, like Evernote or Dropbox.

Step 2: Tap the “Contacts” icon at the bottom of the screen. This will take you to the section that summarizes the list of accounts you are merging, the duplicates you have within those contacts, filters you can use to find similarities (like same birthday or same day added), and contacts that are missing a field (like no name or no phone number).

Step 3: Check the contacts in question to see that they really are duplicates before merging.

Step 4: Tap “Duplicate Contacts” to see the list of contacts that are supposedly duplicates.

Step 5: Tap on a name to see what other contacts the app considers a duplicate.

Step 6: Tap “New Contact” to ensure that all information is correct.

Step 7: Merge contacts. You can manually merge duplicate contacts under their name by tapping “Manual Merge,” or tap the “Merge” button at the top of the screen to do it automatically. You can also reorder the priority of the contacts, as well.

How to delete duplicate contacts

Cleaner Pro 4Step 1: Under “Contacts,” select Duplicate Phones, Duplicate Emails, or Similar Names to find additional contacts that might be duplicates of something else. You may have added your buddy’s email address in separate places.

Step 2: In order to delete duplicate contacts, select a contact that you want to delete and then tap the trash can icon at the bottom right side of the screen.

You can also combine multiple contacts under one group name. For example, all of my contacts for writers at iDB can be combined into one group under iDB. Select the contacts you want to combine into a group and select the triangle icon at the bottom left side of the screen.

Once you’ve merged and weeded out unnecessary duplicate contacts, you’ll see how much easier it is to find names in your address book for faster correspondences.

Cleaner Pro is available on the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch for $0.99. Download it in the App Store today.

The generous developer of this useful productivity app has kindly given us a promo code for Cleaner Pro, as well as two codes for Simpler Pro, which includes Smart Merge, Cleaner, and Text 2 Group into one single app.

Cleaner Pro Codes

Other apps that let you find, merge and delete duplicate contacts

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  • iKnowAppleBest

    Didn’t get to the codes on time, but thanks iDB for the review and many thanks to the developer that gave the codes in the first place!

    • http://www.idownloadblog.com Sebastien

      And thank you for taking the time to thank the dev, even though you didn’t get a chance to grab a code. Maybe next time :)

  • Shawn

    If you have a Mac the contacts app can find duplicates as well and then sync back to iCloud

  • sad

    Why do you post codes as pictures instead of typing them so i can copy and paste? :(

  • 2T

    Why has disqus disabled downvotes?

  • Landrum

    Where do you input the promo code? I’m having no luck. Great gesture to offer them by the way. Thanks

    • Burge

      In the app store you just click redeem and put the code in.. Give one of these codes a try to see how to do it.. P.s.. You will not get the app though these codes have been used.

      • Landrum

        Oh ok. I found it. Thanks, appreciate it!

  • Prathik Nair

    When will let’s talk jailbreak be available for subscribers …!! Can’t wait to listen to both podcasts in one day .

  • Rafa García

    Is there a tweak that does this?

  • Kevin Osborne

    @seb481:disqus LoL @ “Tom No Fucks Given” nice one… :P

    • http://www.sacramaniacs.com/ Lory Gil

      Whoops. That is the name of the guy’s band. I totally forgot to blur out the cuss word.

      • Kevin Osborne

        I figured you forgot, which is what made it funny. >.<

  • http://www.news-world.us/ arslion

    use Sync Me !! does the same for free. and also sync pictures with fb,g+ etc

    https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/sync.me-for-facebook-smartsync/id340787494

  • Tinygedeyge

    Do you mind me share a much easier way to merge duplicate contacts on iPhone? Here is an option named “File Manager” on the Tenorshare iPhone Care Pro app, click it to choose “Contact”, then you can merge iPhone duplicate contacts just click the “Merge” button. Moreover, add, edit, delete contacts are also available.

  • Sam Tomy

    Have you still been puzzled by the space problem? I have solved my iphone space problem. When the iOS 8 was out, space of my iPhone is not enough for update, then I found an iPhone Cleaner software in the CNET, aha, the update is successful owing to the Cleaner. You can download in CNET, for both Mac and Windows. Just type:Macgo iPhone Cleaner. Hope my answer could help you.