Why can't I search through my contacts on my HTC One?

HTC One with Beats audio

Episode 1139

Gary from San Diego, CA

Gary has an HTC One with Beats audio. He has over 5,000 contacts and his phone won't let him search through them. Leo says that's likely because HTC has replaced the Google contacts app with its own, which is a problem. Google has started to release apps like Calendar and Docs on the Google Play store, but hasn't released the contacts yet. They probably won't, since people mostly use the phone's dialer for that.

Why do apps require so much access to my phone?


Episode 1136

Brian from New Hampshire

Brian doesn't understand why apps ask permission for so much access to his smartphone in order to run. Leo says that while being able to have denied permissions would be nice, it could break the app since most aren't written that way. But Leo believes we'll eventually get there.

In iOS 8, users get the ability to refuse the permission for apps to ask for contacts. But sometimes those permissions need to be given even for basic functions of the app.

Organize iPhone Contacts by Groups

Contacts can be organized into groups on the iPhone or iPad to make them easier to find. However, it may not immediately be obvious that this is possible because Apple still doesn't allow you to create those groups on iOS 7 -- you can only view them. To create groups, you must do it in iCloud or from your computer. Here's how to create groups using both methods:

How do I stop people I don't know from syncing to my contacts?

Episode 1043

Michele from Los Angeles, CA

Michele got a text from someone saying "Merry Christmas" and she has no idea who it is, though he's in her contacts. Leo suggests that it may be someone through social media - via Google+ or Facebook, which can be set up to automatically sync to a contact list. Twitter, Linked In, and Skype may do this as well. Outside of that, Outlook has a setting that automatically adds anyone she would email to her contact list. If she can narrow it down to where these contacts are coming from, then she can disable the sync option to her contacts.

How can I prevent Facebook from using my contacts?

Episode 1032

Robert from Palm Springs, CA

Robert wants to install the Facebook and Twitter apps, but he's worried about the apps having access to his address book. Leo says it's best to just say no to that. The apps should ask beforehand, so he should take his time when he installs, and just say no. Twitter does it different on Android, though. It makes him think the contacts are on Twitter by having a check beside all his addressees. And that can be embarrassing when Twitter is harassing them with emails. That's what happened to Leo.

How can I backup and sync my contacts?

Episode 993

Chris from Frankfort, KY

Chris is having problems with iCloud and his contacts. Leo says he's not a fan of iCloud and prefers Google for that. It can be a bit painful to move to it, but once he does, he'll be better off. Leo advises backing up his contacts, and then exporting them as CSV or VCard format. Then he can import them into Google Contacts. He may end up with duplicates, however, so be ready to clear them and backup every step of the way. Once done, don't sync from multiple sources, just stick with Google.

How can I import contacts from my old Seiko Smart Label Printer to my Google Nexus 7?

Episode 966

Barney from Los Angeles, CA

Barney wants to open the rolodex file he has saved in his old Seiko Smart Label Printer on his Google Nexus 7. Leo says to use the software that the file printer comes with and export it to a standard file format, like comma separated values (CSV). Once he has that file, he can then import them into Google Contacts. Leo also says to go into Google contacts and edit the imported contacts. Then, once done, it'll automatically sync to the Nexus 7.

How can I sync my contacts onto my new Android phone without getting duplicates? (Part 2)

Episode 895

Sundar from Midland, Maryland

Whenever someone gets an Android phone, it will ask them to log in using their Google account. Unless he specifically chooses not to have it sync, it will sync his contacts. Since Sundar had already copied his contacts over using a microSD card, he has duplicates. Leo would stop syncing using the microSD card, and only sync with Google. Leo lets Google handle all of his contacts and calendar information, and he doesn't keep it anywhere else. The advantage to this is, when he gets a new phone, he just has to sync it to Google and he'll have the same address book everywhere.

Why did the contacts widget stop working on my iGoogle page?

Episode 877

Dennis from Marina Del Rey, CA

From the Chatroom, older versions of the Google Contacts API were killed in early April. So that’s probably why the widgets stopped working and it’s probably a precursor to Google killing iGoogle altogether. Leo couldn't find any official Google contacts widget, and couldn't even find editor's picks anymore either.

Dennis also wanted to know how to get contacts in one phone book on his phone to those in Google. Leo thinks there's a way to either merge them or import one phone book into the other at

How can I sync my Android 'HTC Incredible' phone's contacts with Microsoft Outlook?

Episode 875

Rene from Long Beach, CA

Unfortunately, Microsoft Outlook will not sync contacts with Android phones, and in fact it doesn't even sync with Windows Phone 7 either. There are a few ways Rene can accomplish this goal, however.

  • Microsoft Exchange Server
  • If Rene were using a Microsoft Exchange Server, then it would be possible. Most corporations use this, and with the Exchange Server it works fine.