Contacts gone on your Android phone? Don't panic! You may need to check this one setting

Contacts gone on your Android phone? Don't panic! You may need to check this one setting
Google has recently rolled out a minor change to its contact syncing process on Android devices that may actually have a substantial outcome. This change, when not dealt with correctly, can actually completely wipe your contacts from your phone although they are still saved in the cloud.

As reported by Android Authority, this change is part of the May 24th update to Google Play Services (v23.20) where the changelog indicates that turning off sync with Google Contacts will now remove all the previously synced entries from your Android Phone. This differs from the previous behavior where the contacts would remain on the phone even when sync was off, just not sync any new ones.

This is significant because there could be instances in which this setting could be potentially turned off and the user could mistakenly think that the contact entries have been lost. In reality, all synced contacts can be viewed from any device or the web by navigating to and these entries remain unchanged unless you manually delete them.

However, the default setting is for the toggle to sync contacts to be on, and turning it off actually requires some extra steps. This ensures that turning off sync is not something you can just do by accident and requires that you navigate through the device's Settings > Passwords & accounts menu.

The important detail to remember is that should you notice your contacts are missing from your Android phone, the first thing to check is to make sure that contacts sync hasn't been accidentally turned off. Should you need to immediately access your contacts and cannot wait for a sync to complete, you can also access them via the web.

Meanwhile this new version of Google Play Services also contains bug fixes and new developer features for app developers to support device connectivity features within in their apps. Google Play Services updates normally roll out along with updates to the Android operating system, which in the case of May, rolled out for Android 13 back in the beginning of the month to Pixel and other eligible devices.

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