3 Replies Latest reply: Oct 12, 2010 6:49 AM by Allan Sampson
Pamela Hollinger Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
After syncing and also updating to version 4.1 on my iPhone 4, I noticed I now have duplicate contacts. I tried calling Apple Care and they sent me off to get help online, which I didn't appreciate. They think the problem might be related to me having MobileMe which I know very little about.

How can I get rid of these duplicates?

iPhone4, iOS 4, I also have a new iMac that I sync the phone with.
  • wjosten Level 10 Level 10 (93,685 points)
    If you use MobileMe, follow the directions here:

    http://support.apple.com/kb/HT3677
  • MaryEF Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Pamela,

    If like me you do not use MobileMe (it says "free for 60 days" which implies we might need to pay for it in future) then you can simply remove it (for PCs use Control Panel > Programs and Features > double click on MobileMe and remove it).

    Backup your phone from iTunes by right clicking on the device and selecting backup.

    You then need to manually clean up the duplicates on your PC or Mac using Outlook or Windows Contacts or whatever eMail software you use to maintain contact lists. I used Windows Contact manager (Start > search for Contact) as I have yet to configure Outlook
    * Open the software
    * Export a copy of the contacts so you have a back-up
    * in Windows Contact manager click on the header and set to also show the email address, business phone, home phone, cell phone, first name, last name and company
    * click on the duplicate and press the delete key - it will prompt you to confirm
    * When clean, export a copy to e.g. contactsyy-mm-ddClean.csv
    * Create a New Contact Group called iPhone (or several if you want to sort them, e.g iPhone Suppliers, iPhone Home, iPhone Work)
    * Drag and drop contacts into these groups
    * in iTunes, set to synchronise selected groups only > apply > synchronise
    * accept the prompt to clear down your phone

    This is obviously buggy software from Apple creating these duplicates - causing problems for loads of people I know. It's a pain to clean it manually, but it is the only way I know to get the right addresses sorted at the moment (links posted to apps seem to have comments that "does not work" or worse "deleted ALL my contacts" /sigh).

    You will need to remember to manually add NEW contacts to the iPhone group(s) on your PC.

    Hope this helps
  • Allan Sampson Level 10 Level 10 (123,370 points)
    This is obviously buggy software from Apple creating these duplicates - causing problems for loads of people I know.


    Baloney.

    This is a typical example of garbage in = garbage out.

    With a MobileMe account with contacts being synced over the air with the account on the iPhone, this means the OP also selected sync contacts direct with a supported address book application on her computer, which is selected under the Info tab for her iPhone sync preferences with iTunes. When syncing contacts over the air with a MobileMe account on an iPhone, the following is included below Sync Contacts under the Info tab for your iPhone sync preferences with iTunes.

    +*Your contacts are being synced with MobileMe over the air. You can also choose to sync contacts with this computer. This may result in duplicated data showing on your device.*+

    This should read - this WILL result in duplicated data on your device if you are also syncing the contacts in the supported address book application on your computer with your MobileMe online address book. Not may, doing both will definitely duplicate the contacts on the iPhone.

    The option to do both was added by Apple for those accessing a company Exchange account on their iPhone along with syncing company/business contacts and calendar events over the air with the Exchange account on their iPhone who also want to have access to personal contacts and calendar events on their iPhone synced direct with a supported address book and calendar on a personal computer at home via the iTunes sync process. When doing both in this way, you can view business and personal contacts and calendar events combined or separately on the iPhone with business and personal contacts and calendar events synced and stored separately on the iPhone.

    When doing both with a MobileMe account with the supported address book application on your computer that is synced with your MobileMe online address book, this does nothing but duplicate all contacts on your iPhone - one set synced over the air with the MobileMe account on the iPhone and the other set stored locally on the iPhone and synced direct with the supported address book application on your computer via the iTunes sync process.

    A typical example of Garbage in = Garbage out which has nothing to with buggy software or bugs in the least.