When using an Android phone, we prefer to use Google Contacts to store and manage contacts. But when it comes to iPhone, users are confused between iCloud Contacts and Google Contacts. If you are also wondering where to save the contacts on your iPhone – iCloud or Google? You will find the answer in this article.
You can choose any of the options when you start using your new iPhone. Of course, you can always switch to another service later. But why would you want to take the risk and headache of merging or losing contacts?
We’ll help you figure out which one to choose between iCloud Contacts and Google Contacts. Let’s start.
Cloud account required
Usually, when you save a contact on your iPhone, it is saved to your iPhone storage. You can now turn on iCloud Contacts or use other services like Google Contacts to sync contacts.
ICloud Contacts is a service associated with iCloud storage that uses Apple ID. When you add an Apple ID on your iPhone, iCloud is turned on automatically. It is a default cloud service on Apple devices. You can turn on / off various services like photos, notes, reminders, calendar, etc. Contacts are also one of these services. When iCloud Contacts is turned on, your iPhone contacts sync with your iCloud account. You will be happy to know that iCloud Contacts work without adding an additional account or app to your iPhone.
On the contrary, Google Contacts, as is evident, is a service of Google. You need to sign in with your Google account on your iPhone to use Google Contacts.
You can access iCloud contacts mainly on Apple devices (iPhone, iPad, and Mac). And on the web version of iCloud also accessible from a Windows PC.
You can use Google Contacts on iPhone, iPad, Web and Android phones without any problem. Basically, you can access Google contacts from another phone, computer, or tablet by signing in your Google account and without using a workaround.
Point: Find out how to view Apple Notes on Android.
Once you add respective accounts for iCloud or Google on your iPhone, the existing contacts from each service will be synced with those from your iPhone.
Any changes you make to the contact on iPhone or other devices will be reflected immediately on other connected devices. Basically, the syncing process works the same for iCloud and Google. You don’t need to worry about it.
The only difference is that by default, existing and brand new iPhone contacts will sync with iCloud. You will need to manually change the default storage location for new contacts, as instructed at the end of the post.
Whether you are backing up contacts to iCloud or Google, they can be accessed using the same app on iPhone i.e. Apple Contacts app. Google does not offer a dedicated contacts app for iPhone as available on Android.
When contacts are saved to either service, you might be wondering what features you would get. Let’s start with the organization.
On both services, you can organize your contacts into categories. With iCloud Contacts you get the Groups and in Google Contacts you have Tags.
Import / export contacts
Fortunately, both make it easy to add new contacts in bulk using the import feature. Likewise, you can export all your contacts with Export. The feature is available on the web version of both services and cannot be used directly on the iPhone.
Find and merge contacts
Over time, you save duplicate copies of various contacts. Instead of manually finding duplicate contacts, you would prefer a feature that would automatically find duplicate contacts.
Fortunately, one of the cool features of Google Contacts is finding duplicate contacts and merging them. You can do this using the web version of Google Contact (on mobile and PC) and through the Google Contacts app on Android phones.
On the other hand, only Mac supports finding duplicate contacts in iCloud (Go to Card> Find Duplicates in Contacts app). Otherwise, you will either have to find them manually or use the help of third-party applications like Cleaner.
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Restore deleted contacts
In case you accidentally delete a contact from any of the services you intend to use. Fortunately, you can restore it on both services.
You will need to use the iCloud Web Account Settings section to restore Apple Contacts. We have written a detailed guide on how to restore deleted contacts from Google Contacts.
Where to save contacts on iPhone
The answer depends on your needs and preferences. This means that if you only use Apple devices, you should continue to stay with iCloud Contacts. You also need to move your existing Gmail contacts to iCloud. If you decide to upgrade to Android or Google Contacts in the future, you can still do so.
But if you own an Android phone or keep switching between Android and iPhone on a regular basis, Google Contacts is a better choice. Also, if you use a lot of Google services, you should go for Google Contacts.
However, there is no hard and fast rule. You can use one, both, or neither. Your user experience will be the same whether you use Google Contacts or iCloud Contacts. When both services are enabled, existing contacts from both services sync with your iPhone. However, you will need to decide where you want to save the new contacts, as shown below.
Tip: change the default contacts account on iPhone
To do this, open the settings on your iPhone and go to Contacts. Tap Default Account. Select Gmail or iCloud. IOS will use the selected account to save new contacts. Nothing will happen to existing contacts.
The good choice
If you decide to stay with iCloud Contacts, you don’t need to move your existing iPhone contacts. They will automatically sync with iCloud. But if you want to use Google Contacts, change the default storage location for new accounts as shown above. Then move your existing iCloud contacts to Google Contacts. You can also use both services to sync contacts between iPhone and iPhone.
If you want to use Google services instead of Apple, you might want to sign out of Apple ID. Find out what happens when you sign out of Apple ID on your iPhone or iPad from the link in the following article.
Last updated Jan 7, 2021
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