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While most Android users were thrilled with the release of the new Android update, a number of surface level issues arose while users were using the mobile device soon after the update. Once such issue was the ‘Unfortunately Contacts has stopped’ error. This error can be quite annoying especially in instances where you were just about to make an important phone call, or other times when you most need it.
This error mostly appears in Samsung phones, particularly the newer Galaxy range which includes the S4 to S7 range and also the Samsung Note series. However, this error can also appear in devices that aren’t by Samsung, but have a version of Android installed on it. This is a pretty common error, and can happen to anyone.
Don’t panic! There is an easy fix to solving this problem which will get your contacts up and running in no time. What’s more is that this error in no way compromises your contact list, so there is no need to worry about losing your contact list.
Root Cause: Identifying What Happened, So We Can Approach Fixing It?
Pro tip: If that is your initial thought, you are on the right track. One of the most efficient ways to solving this problem is to identify the reason for this problem. All the solutions listed in this guide work on the basis that you know what is causing this error. If however, you still cannot figure out the cause of this, the best approach would be to follow all the solutions listed below to ensure that you solve this problem once and for all.
Most likely, the cause for your issue is either somehow cache and data for Contacts is corrupted – which is an easy fix, in Solution #1. Read here an article I wrote that goes into some further detail about Android memory, right here on Error Codes Pro! Further, in Solution #2 we try to see if an external app (other than Contacts) is causing Contacts to misbehave. Solution #3 involves trying safe mode, which will disable all non-essential apps and services, where Solution #4 involves you wiping your phone’s cache entirely!
Pro Tip: The exact steps may vary according to your device. Google your device make and model, and the suggested step, and you’ll find tailored directions! Good luck!
“I believe Android will be stronger in the developing world than it is in the developed world.” – Fred Wilson
Solution #1: Clear Cache and Data for Contacts, and Try Again!
Your first step is to troubleshoot the app. Since, at this point you probably don’t know what’s causing this error, it is best course of action would be to force restart the app by clearing the cache and restoring it to its default settings. No need to panic, this process will not wipe out your entire contact list, but merely resets the cached data. Pro Tip: Should your App refuse to close when trying these steps, try this handy article on How To Geek to force quit Contacts! To try out this solution follow the steps below:
Step 1 – In the home screen, tap on the icon that opens up Apps.
Step 2 – Choose the settings option.
Step 3: Go to “Applications” within the settings and then tap on the Application Manager.
Step 4: Click the option to view All.
Step 5: Scroll through the list until you see ‘Contacts‘
Step 6: Within the Contacts settings, choose the option to Clear cache.
Step 7: Choose the Clear data button and tap on OK.
If this method fixes the problem, the most likely cause of the error would be that the app crashed, and merely needed a restart.
Solution 1.5: Another Great Idea, For Any Android Concern
Not good enough for it’s own whole #, but a great idea nonetheless! Should you have gotten this far and still need help, try rebooting your device. Another extremely easy way to see if a crash was indeed the reason for the error: simply reboot the phone. It is one of the most effective ways to deal with app crashes. This article on Trend Blog goes into a huge amount of detail on how to achieve this – even further explaining ‘hard resetting,’ which may yield you results.
Solution #2: The Previous Steps Didn’t Work and My Contacts App is Still Freaking Out! Could it Be Another App Causing Grief?
If this is what’s currently going on in your mind, the first thing you need to do is calm down and think if you have installed any new apps recently, or given any apps new permissions or installed a new update for a particular app? If that is the case, resetting the app preferences or uninstalling the previous update would help fix the error. If you think you haven’t done so intentionally, or just aren’t sure, the steps below will help you know if it was an external third party app that caused the crash.
Step 1: In the home screen, tap on the icon that opens up the Apps.
Step 2: Choose the settings app.
Step 3: Scroll through the applications and choose the Application Manager.
Step 4: Choose the option to ‘Reset app preferences’
Step 5: (Optional) You could also choose to ‘Reset default apps’
If this solution did work, then you can give yourself a pat on the back because you just figured out what was causing the crash. It was indeed an external app that was causing the crash.
What actually happens is when you have many apps on your phone running at the same time, they can clog up the RAM. Since a phone isn’t like a computer and has limited resources, sometimes two apps which are using the same resources cannot run at the same time. In Android phones, a lot of times, even if you aren’t on the app page, the apps are still running in the background which can cause your contacts app to crash. For another instance of an Android App causing issues, read this solution to a common Google Play issue I’d written (specifically error 927)- also right here on Error Codes Pro! Further, there are other talented authors here who write about similar Google Play issues – like Unknown Install Error 961.
Solution #3: All is Lost! None of the Above Helped!
Pro tip in two words: SAFE MODE. Assuming that you followed the previous steps but the error still occurs, booting the phone in safe mode will help you narrow down on the problem. What’s more, is it will actually tell you if any apps are causing the problem or not. On Windows, we’d be able to Clean Boot – read here how I describe that solution, should you be facing any Windows issues that might require it! The steps to boot your phone into safe mode are as follows:
Step 1: Turn off your phone
Step 2: Hold down the Power key
Step 3: When the name of your phone appears on the screen, release the key you are holding.
For example, if you have a Lenovo K5, release the key once you see the ‘lenovo’ logo
Step 4: After releasing the Power Key, immediately press and hold down the volume key.
Step 5: Continue holding down the volume key until the device finishes restarting.
Step 6: You will see a text that says ‘Safe Mode’ in the bottom left of your screen.
Step 7: Release hold of the volume key when you see the ‘Safe Mode’
If all else fails and the error message still occurs, the problem may lie with some of the apps that came preinstalled with your device and you could try uninstalling the most recent apps. However, this is recommended only if you have tried ALL the methods mentioned here and should only be opted for as a last resort.
Solution #4: Nope, That Didn’t Work Either. Is It Just a Problem With My Phone in General? Could I Wipe the Entire Device’s Cache?
If you have begun experiencing this problem just after updating your Android software, then there is a very high chance your caches have become corrupted. In this case, the best course of action would be to clear out all the phone’s cache. But don’t worry, doing this will not cause any harm to your phone or wipe out any apps, pictures, music or contacts. To make things better, after the cache wipe, the phone will be forced to create new caches which will ensure that your phone works as normal. Following the steps below should help fix the problem.
Step 1: Turn off the device.
Step 2: Press and hold down all the side buttons i.e Volume + Power along with the Home button all at the same time.
Step 3: The phone will start vibrating and at this point, release the Power button but keep the volume and home buttons pressed all through.
Step 4: Release the volume and home buttons once the Android System Recovery screen appears.
Step 5: Using the volume buttons as scroll keys, choose the ‘wipe cache partition‘ option.
Step 6: Press the power key to confirm your selection.
Step 7: After the wipe is complete you will see a text that says ‘Reboot System now‘
Step 8: Restart your device.
Should all else fail? Ask an expert online or in-person! First you’ll need to know your exact device model.
Pro Tip: Remember that most phones comes with a warranty period. Depending on your phone, you can find the manufacturer by looking at the phone’s specifications. Here’s how you do it on an Android 4.0+ (Kitkat/Jelly Bean/Ice Cream Sandwich)
Step 1: Open the main menu
Step 2: Choose the settings icon
Step 3: Scroll all the way to the bottom
Step 4: You will see that the last option says ‘About Phone’. Choose this option.
Step 5: Within the ‘About Phone’ category, look for ‘Device Information’. It should be the second last option in the list.
Step 6: The model number of your phone is written at the top along with its brand.
Step 7: Visit the brands website and get in touch with customer support or visit the nearest customer outlet.
If you absolutely cannot figure out what is wrong with your phone even after following all the steps mentioned, there are plenty of engineers out there willing to lend a helping hand. Just don’t be afraid to ask! Other Android problems got you down? Like Error 905 in the Google Play Store? We’ve got a solution for Error 905 on Error Codes Pro!
Ryan is a computer enthusiast who has a knack for fixing difficult and technical software problems. Whether you’re having issues with Windows, Safari, Chrome or even an HP printer, Ryan helps out by figuring out easy solutions to common error codes.