to commonly asked questions.


Setting default account for contacts

How do I hide and show different sets of contacts and how do I set the default account when adding contacts?

Below are screenshots of how to toggle on and off buckets on computers and iOS devices as well as how to set the default accounts on each.

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I have duplicate contacts on my phone.

I have duplicate contacts on my phone. What do I do?


A couple things could be at play here.

1. You might have contacts turned on for more than one account. For example: google contacts, exchange contacts, iCloud contacts. If this is the case, just going into settings/contacts/accounts/ then turning off contacts for any email account other than iCloud would most likely solve the issue.

2. You may have the contacts not only in iCloud but perhaps copies “on my phone”. If this is the case, the best way to check that is to go into the contacts app, select “groups”, turn off iCloud. If you see a group called “on my phone” and you see lots and lots of contacts still on your phone then that’s the problem. The way we would handle that would be to do the to do the following:

on the phone; go to iCloud settings, turn off contacts. It’s going to ask you if you’d like to remove. Say yes.
wait about 2 minutes then turn contacts back on within iCloud. It’s now going to ask you if you’d like to merge. Say yes.
You should now no longer have any “on my phone” contacts as they would have merged into your iCloud account however, there could now be duplicates within iCloud.
If that is the case, you would next go into the Address book app on the computer and under Card in the menu bar, select “look for duplicates”.

Removing contact group from your address book

I created a couple groups and then realized that there were other random groups like hijk, M-Q, and R-Z.
Any steps I should take to get rid of them so I can be extra OCD and happy with a cleaner look?


Select the group. Hit the "delete" key. This will only delete the grouping. It will not delete the contacts.

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Printing Labels in Contacts

I had a pc program to print address book pages. Is there a program for Apple?

Yes, the built in Address Book (now called Contacts) will allow you to print, labels, envelopes and lists. You'll need to select all the contacts you want to print in a list first then select print. You'll need to select "Show Details" in the print dialog box. That will give you more options.

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Next select lists from the Style menu then choose which variables you'd like included in the list like email, phone, company, etc…. Keep in mind, this function is only available on the Mac. The iPhone/iPad do not yet have this ability.

How do I flip my contacts to print Christmas cards?

Scotty, I have a question. Scotty - A while back, you showed me how to create a group in contacts and "mark as company" the whole group for the purpose of Christmas cards, i.e. the address reads The Smith Family versus Mary Smith. I can't remember how to "mark" the whole group versus going one contact at a time. When I "select all", the "mark as company" and "mark as person" options are disabled. Please advise. Thx so much.

This was a feature that was included in Apple's MacOS address book for many years then they removed it for about 4 years. The good news is it is back but you need to be on macOS Catalina 10.15 in order to see that functionality. If you've not yet updated or don't want to at the moment, I can assist if needed.

Depending on the age of your computer, you can go to the App Store on your Mac and then search for “Catalina”. It is 10.15. After the update, you’ll again be able to flip all contacts from person to company all at once.

Note: always make sure you’ve backed up your computer before ever doing an update.

How do I get some contacts from one iCloud account to another?

Hi Scotty -
Somehow my son lost all his contacts. Can you help him figure out? Please call me when you have a chance. Thanks!

When he signed out of the jonesfamily apple ID, the contacts that were on his phone were most likely associated to that AppleID. They're not gone. They're still in the cloud. But his Dad's cloud. His contacts are most likely combined with his dads and have been for some time I would guess. To get the contacts he wants, I suggest he go to, log in to the jonesfamily appleID, then go to contacts.

From there, he could either export copies of all the contacts at once or select just the contacts he wants individually then export those. To do this he would use the gear in the bottom right corner of the webpage while in the contacts area:

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If he wants to select only some, he can scroll through the list while holding down the command key and click on only his friend's names then choose export card.

To export them all at once, he can click on any one contact, then command + a. This will select all contacts. Then choose export card.

He will now have a new file on the desktop. He'll sign out of and sign back in again as his personal appleID. Go back to contacts and select to import vcards. He'll choose the file on desktop he just created and they'll now be in his iCloud account.
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