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Google Contacts suffered from a bit of a memory lapse

Contacts are one of those things that you don’t really think about until something goes wrong. When you add someone, their info syncs to your Google account and gets automatically downloaded to all of your Android devices, and you don’t even have to fuss with things if you switch to a new phone. However, many users have reported not seeing their contacts at all, which may be caused by a recent Google update. Thankfully, the issue is now fixed.


In a statement to 9to5Google, Google said that “We have fully rolled out a bug fix for affected users.” If you still can’t access your contacts for some reason, Google recommends you manually sync your contacts to your Android device by going to Settings -> Passwords & accounts -> [your Gmail address] -> Account sync and enable the Contacts toggle.

When opening the Contacts app on their phones, some Google Pixel and Samsung Galaxy users were seeing the message “No contacts in this account.” Every contact that was previously synced is removed from the device. What makes this strange is that the contacts were still clearly visible online at, so the issue didn’t appear to be central to any one device.

Interestingly, the May 2023 Google System Update, which was recently shipped out to most Android devices via the Google Play Store, outlines a change that sounds eerily familiar here. In the Utilities section of the update, it states that “Turning off sync with Google Contacts sync will now remove the previously synced contacts from your Android phone,” which may have been the root of the problem here.

The fact this was happening on multiple different devices seems to point to a problem with Google Contacts sync rather than any particular app. While Pixels use the Google Contacts app, Galaxy phones use Samsung’s Contacts app by default, so two different pieces of software were affected, but they both sync to Google Contacts on the backend. In this case, it’s possible that the update mentioned above may have automatically turned off contact sync.

UPDATE: 2023/06/16 03:44 EST BY MANUEL VONAU

Story updated with Google statement and resolution.


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