how to export iphone contacts to a CSV File

A CSV file, which is short for a comma-separated values file, allows you to store vast amount of information in a file that can be opened with spreadsheet apps like Microsoft Excel, or Apple’s Numbers app just like other spreadsheet file types can be.

This is a great way to keep a backup of your Contacts information safe for whenever you have a catastrophic meltdown on your computer or iOS devices, and in this tutorial, we’ll show you how you can export your Contacts to either an Excel or a CSV file.

Exporting your contacts

You can actually do this whether you’re on a Mac, PC, or if you’re on an iOS device. This guide will show you both methods. Admittedly, exporting your contacts to Excel is much easier on your iPhone or iPad as it is a straightforward process. It is a bit more cumbersome to do from your computer, but fear not, our step-by-step tutorial will walk you through the entire process.

Making a CSV file from the contacts in your iCloud account

The most convenient way to do this from a Mac or PC is from iCloud.com, which you can access from any device you want. You will follow these steps to make it happen.

1) Head over to iCloud.com in your preferred web browser and log in with your credentials.

Log in to iCloud website Apple

2) Now click on the Contacts app from the list of provided services.

iCloud Website Contacts App

3) Next, wait for your contacts to load, and then click on the Settings cog at the bottom left of the webpage.

iCloud Website Contacts Settings Button

4) From the list, click on the Select All option to make sure you have all of your contacts selected before proceeding to the next step.

iCloud Website Contacts Select All

5) Once selected, click on the Settings cog once again, and this time click on the Export vCard… option.

iCloud Website Contacts Export vCard

6) A vCard file will now be downloaded to your computer’s Download’s folder.

vCard File Mac Finder Downloads Folder7) Open your favorite web browser once again, and visit the following URL:

http://labs.brotherli.ch/vcfconvert/

CSV Converter Website

8) Click on the Choose File button and select the vCard file you downloaded earlier. Then, configure the following options as such:

  • Format: choose CSV, choose Comma, enable Add Header Line
  • Encoding: choose Unicode (UTF-8)
  • Filter: don’t change anything
  • Modifications: don’t change anything

Once configured, click on the Convert button.

CSV Converter Website Convert Button

9) A CSV file will now be downloaded to your computer’s Downloads folder:

Mac Finder Downloads Folder CSV File

10) Test the file by opening it in Microsoft Excel or Apple Numbers. Everything should be sorted in an organized manner.

CSV File in Microsoft Excel

And you’re done! Your contacts will be organized by name and their information will be displayed in this spreadsheet.

Making an XLS Excel file from contacts on your iPhone or iPad

For those of you who will be tackling this from your mobile device, whether it’s an iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad, you can just use an App Store app called Export Contact to make an XLS file for Microsoft Excel or Apple Numbers instead.

To do this, follow these steps:

1) Download and install the app on your iOS device.

2) Launch the app, and when you’re asked to give the app access to your contacts, allow it.

export iphone contacts by giving the app access to your contacts

3) Tap on the CSV or Excel file type. CSV will output a .csv file that can be opened with Excel. The Excel file type will output a .xlsx file that will also be compatible with Excel. For better versatility, I suggest selecting the Excel file format. Tap the Continue button, which will backup all your contacts.

Select the Excel file format

4) Tap on Export and select the desired export source for the XLS file. We’ll be using Dropbox because it’s convenient for us. Select Save to Dropbox. Note that you can as easily select email, SMS, and more.

Save contacts to Dropbox

5) Tap on Choose a Folder to select the save location of your Excel file. Once you have selected a folder, tap Choose, then Save to save the file to the specific Dropbox folder.

6) Now on your Mac or PC, you can open your output source. In our case, it was Dropbox. The file should be sitting there and waiting for you to open:

Mac Finder Dropbox Contacts XLS file

7) Open the file to ensure that everything looks good. It can be opened with either Microsoft Excel or Apple Numbers.

XLS File with contacts in it

And that’s all there is to it! All of your contacts should show up in this XLS file and they will be organized by name.

Wrapping up

Now that you have a CSV or XLS file backed up, you should really consider putting it somewhere safe, such as on a backup hard drive or flash drive. This will ensure that whenever you lose your iOS device, Mac, or other Apple device, you will always have a backup and can re-add contacts if necessary.

Although iCloud works great for keeping your contacts in sync across all of your devices, there are times when iCloud sees downtime and may not work properly, so having your own spreadsheet file is a great way to ensure you always have an offline list of your contacts and their information and makes re-adding it in the future a breeze.

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Did you know you could export your contacts as a CSV or XLS file? Share in the comments below!