How to Download Contacts from iCloud: A Step-by-Step Guide


Ted Stinson

Downloading contacts from iCloud is a breeze if you know the right steps. Whether you’re switching phones or just want to back up your contacts, this process will ensure you don’t lose any important information. In less than 100 words, here’s how you do it: Sign in to using your Apple ID, select Contacts, click on the gear icon at the bottom left, choose ‘Select All’, then ‘Export vCard’. That’s it! You’ve successfully downloaded your contacts from iCloud.

Step by Step Tutorial: How to Download Contacts from iCloud

Before we dive into the steps, let’s get an idea of what we’re aiming to achieve here. The goal is to access your contacts stored in iCloud and download them onto your computer. This can be handy in case you need to transfer them to a different device or simply want a backup. Let’s get started.

Step 1: Sign in to

Sign in to your iCloud account by going to and entering your Apple ID and password.

Once signed in, you will see the main dashboard with icons for various apps and services linked to your iCloud account. It’s important to make sure that you’re signing in with the same Apple ID that is associated with your contacts on your device.

Step 2: Select Contacts

Click on the Contacts icon to access your address book.

The Contacts page will show a list of all the individuals you’ve saved in your iCloud account. From here, you can manage, edit, or add new contacts as needed.

Step 3: Click on the Gear Icon

Look for the gear icon at the bottom left of the screen and click on it.

The gear icon will open up a settings menu with several options. This is where you can make changes to your contacts or export them.

Step 4: Choose ‘Select All’

From the settings menu, choose the ‘Select All’ option.

Selecting all your contacts is essential if you want to download the entire address book. If you only need specific contacts, you can manually click on each one instead of selecting all.

Step 5: Export vCard

Finally, click on ‘Export vCard’ to download your contacts.

Once you click ‘Export vCard’, a file containing all your contacts will be downloaded to your computer’s default downloads folder, usually in .vcf format. This file can be imported to another address book or email client.

After you complete these steps, all your contacts will be downloaded to your computer. You can keep this file as a backup or use it to upload your contacts to another device or service. It’s a simple and efficient way to manage your contacts outside of your iPhone or iPad.

Tips: Effective Management of iCloud Contacts

  • Regularly update your contacts in iCloud to ensure you always have the latest information backed up.
  • Use the ‘Groups’ feature in iCloud Contacts to organize your contacts into categories for easier access.
  • Double-check that you are logged in to the correct Apple ID account before downloading your contacts.
  • Remember that downloading contacts from iCloud might use some of your data, so it’s best to do it while connected to Wi-Fi.
  • If you’re planning to switch to a non-Apple device, make sure the device supports the .vcf file format for contact import.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I download contacts from iCloud to an Android device?

Yes, you can download your iCloud contacts to an Android device. You’ll need to export the contacts as a vCard and then import them into your Android’s Contacts app.

What if I only want to download certain contacts, not the whole list?

If you want to download specific contacts, you can manually select each contact you need instead of using the ‘Select All’ option during the download process.

Will downloading my contacts from iCloud remove them from the cloud?

No, downloading your contacts does not remove them from iCloud. It simply creates a copy of the contacts on your computer.

How often should I download my contacts from iCloud?

It’s a good idea to download your contacts from iCloud whenever you make significant updates to your address book or before changing devices.

Is it possible to edit contacts after downloading them from iCloud?

Yes, you can edit your contacts using a compatible contacts manager or email client after downloading them.


  1. Sign in to with your Apple ID.
  2. Click on the Contacts icon.
  3. Click on the gear icon at the bottom left.
  4. Choose ‘Select All’ or select specific contacts.
  5. Click ‘Export vCard’ to download.


So, you now know how to download contacts from iCloud in just a few simple steps. This knowledge is particularly useful when you’re upgrading to a new phone, want to keep a backup of your contacts, or are switching to a different operating system. Remember, your contacts are one of the most crucial parts of your digital life, so keeping them safe and accessible across your devices can save you a lot of time and trouble.

As you go through the steps, don’t rush. Take your time to ensure you’ve selected all the necessary contacts and that you’re exporting them properly. And don’t forget the tips shared in this article; they can help ensure a smoother process and better management of your contacts.

Lastly, always keep in mind that technology is meant to make our lives easier, and features like iCloud are there to help us stay connected and organized. So go ahead, give it a try, and take control of your contacts like a pro!