Top 7 Ways to Fix WhatsApp Not Updating Contacts

Fix WhatsApp not updating contacts

Unlike the complex PIN system of the past, WhatsApp only needs the recipient’s mobile number to contact them. This is one of the main reasons for the growing popularity of WhatsApp. But the problem arises when WhatsApp fails to update the contacts and does not show the newly added number in the app. If you encounter the same frequently, read on to learn the best ways to fix WhatsApp not updating contacts on iPhone and Android.

Fix WhatsApp Not Updating Contacts

You’re back to using old-fashioned text messages or other instant messaging apps (Instant Messaging) when the contact doesn’t appear in WhatsApp. But the other ways may not be suitable for everyone. Instead, you can use the tricks below and start conversations on WhatsApp only.

1. Enable contacts permission for WhatsApp

If you accidentally denied contacts permission to WhatsApp, the app will not be able to access contacts on your phone. Follow the steps below to enable contact permission on WhatsApp for iPhone and Android.


Step 1: Open Settings on your iPhone.

2nd step: Scroll down to WhatsApp.

Step 3: Enable Contacts permission in the next menu.

Step 4: From the home screen, swipe up and hold to open the recent apps menu. Then tap and swipe up on the WhatsApp card to close it. Reopen WhatsApp again and check the contact list.


Step 1: Find the WhatsApp app icon on the home screen or app drawer menu.

2nd step: Long press on WhatsApp and press “i” to open the app info menu.

Step 3: Select Permissions.

Step 4: Tap “Contacts”.

Step 5: Tap the radio button next to Allow, and you’re good to go.

WhatsApp can update the contact list in the app.

2. Manually Refresh Contacts

WhatsApp for Android lets you manually update contacts from within the app. Unfortunately, the same is not available on WhatsApp for iOS.

Step 1: Open WhatsApp on Android.

2nd step: Tap the compose button in the lower right corner.

Step 3: Select the kebab menu (three vertical dots) in the upper right corner.

Step 4: Tap Refresh.

Step 5: Use the search icon at the top and find the relevant contact to send messages or media.

3. Scan a QR code to WhatsApp the recipient

WhatsApp offers an option to generate a QR code for your account. You can scan the recipient’s QR code from your WhatsApp app and start sending messages. Here’s how you can find a QR code to scan.


Step 1: Open WhatsApp and select the compose menu at the bottom.

2nd step: Tap the QR code icon next to “New Contact”. You can scan someone else’s QR code from the same menu.


Step 1: Launch WhatsApp on your iPhone. Switch to the Settings tab.

2nd step: Tap the QR code icon and let others scan it. You can scan the recipient’s code from the same menu.

4. Add new WhatsApp contact

You can directly add new contact from WhatsApp mobile app and send messages.


Step 1: Open WhatsApp and tap on the write menu in the upper right corner.

2nd step: Select New contact.

Step 3: Enter the first name, last name and mobile phone number. Press Save.

You can find the same in your contact list and send messages.


Step 1: Launch WhatsApp, select the Compose button in the bottom right corner and tap New Contact.

2nd step: Fill in the relevant fields and select Save.

5. Invite the contact on WhatsApp

If the recipient is not available on WhatsApp, you can send an invitation to join the platform.


Step 1: Open the Contacts menu in WhatsApp (refer to the steps above).

2nd step: Find the contact and select Invite to send an SMS invitation.


Step 1: Head to the Contacts menu in WhatsApp (check the steps above).

2nd step: Find your contact and invite them to join the platform.

6. Update WhatsApp

An outdated version of WhatsApp may have problems updating contacts. You should regularly update WhatsApp to the latest version. Open Google Play Store or App Store and install pending updates to fix these issues.

7. Ask the person to send a message first

If none of the tricks work, you’ll need to ask the recipient to send a message first. Once you have received the message, you can start conversations with the contact.

Start a conversation on WhatsApp

You will need to double check the added contact on your phone. If you added the wrong number, WhatsApp may not show the contact in the app. Which trick worked for you to fix WhatsApp contacts not updating issue? Share your findings with others in the comments below.

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