Losing important phone numbers can be a real pain. Whether you’ve accidentally delete them or your Android phone crashed and you were suddenly left without them, it’s always incredibly frustrating. Fortunately, you can recover them using your Google account or an additional method involving third-party software. This tutorial shows you different ways to recover the phone numbers you might have deleted from your Android device.
Use the Google Contacts App
When it comes to recovering deleted phone numbers on Android, Google’s Contacts app is the most effective solution.
1. Restore from Trash
Google Contacts comes pre-installed on most Android phones. If it’s not your device, download it from the Play Store. The app stores your deleted contacts (in the Trash folder) for only 30 days before they’re deleted permanently. So if you wish to recover a phone number that you deleted more than 30 days ago, you’ll need to use one of the other methods.
Note: Phone numbers saved to your device sync with your Google Account and Google Contacts. If you never signed in to a Google account on your device, your phone numbers will not be backed up by Google and you won’t be able to recover them using this particular method.
- Open the Google Contacts app on your phone and sign in with your Google account, if you haven’t done that before.
- On the home page, tap on the “Fix & Manage” button.
- Select “Trash”
- Now, you’ll be able to see all the phone numbers you deleted in the last 30 days. Long press on the phone number you want to restore.
- Next, tap on the icon with three vertical dots (Kebab menu) in the top left corner of the screen.
- Select “Recover.”
- To recover all deleted phone numbers at once, tap “Select All” option first.
- At the top, tap on “Recover” and all your deleted phone numbers will be restored to your device.
Keep in mind that you can access your deleted contacts from your PC by going to the Google Contacts page. You’ll need to sign in with your Google account and then click on Bin (or Trash) from the left-side menu (the option is at the bottom).
2. Undo Changes
Sometimes, deleted phone numbers and don’t show up in “Trash.” Thankfully, you can recover them by undoing any recent changes you made. Google lets you undo all the changes you made to your contacts during the past 30 days. To undo changes:
- Open the Google Contacts app.
- Tap the “Fix & Manage” button on the bottom of the home page.
- Select “Settings.”
- Scroll down in the settings page and tap on “Undo changes.”
- Now select the time frame. You can choose from the predefined options or set a custom time frame.
- Tap Confirm and click “OK” to restore the changes. It may take a few minutes for these changes to show up in your contacts.
Note: When you undo changes, you restore the version of your contacts from a specific date and time. This means changes you’ve made in that time frame, such as adding new contacts or editing contacts will also be undone.
3. Import Phone Numbers Again
There’s a possibility that the phone numbers you are looking for are not actually deleted but just corrupted and not showing up in your contact list. This could be due to some error in your Contacts app or some glitch in your device itself. In such a case, it might be a good idea to import contacts on your device again from your Google account or SIM card.
Import Phone Numbers From Your Google Account
- Open the Google Contacts app.
- Tap on the “Fix & Manage” button at the bottom of the home page.
- Next, select the “Restore contacts” option.
- Now, click on the “Restore” button and all your contacts will be imported to your device.
Import Phone Numbers From Your SIM Card
SIM cards come with a small storage capacity to store limited contacts, and many users still use them to store their phone numbers. So if you are one of them, you can easily recover deleted phone numbers by importing them again from your SIM card. To do so:
- Open the Google Contacts app.
- Tap “Fix & Manage” at the bottom of the home page.
- Select “Import from SIM.”
- In case, you have two SIM cards on your device, choose the one from which you want to import the contacts.
- Now, you may see the deleted phone numbers on the list. Tap and select the contacts you want to recover.
- Also choose the location (Google Account or Device) where you want to import the contacts.
- Tap “Import” and your phone numbers will be imported to your desired location.
Restore Your Google Account Contacts Backup
If you don’t want to use the Contacts app to restore the numbers saved to your Google Account, you can do so via Settings.
- Open the Settings app on your phone.
- In Settings, scroll down to find “Google” and tap.
- Select “Set up & restore”.
- Tap on “Restore contacts”.
- Now, tap on the “Restore” button and your deleted phone numbers will be restored back to your device.
Check Your Call History
If you did not make a backup prior to losing your phone numbers, this method is your best chance of getting them back. Try looking for the deleted phone number in your Call History. If you have called the number in the past, it will be there. However, it won’t have the contact name anymore, just the number.
You may not remember the deleted phone number at all, but looking at the call history might help you identify it. Try to remember when you talked to that person last and for how long approximately in order to make the correlation between number and identity.
If you still can’t find the deleted phone number, consider using a caller-identification app called Truecaller. It works like a phone directory and will help you identify all the unknown numbers in your call history.
Truecaller also provides you with some additional details such as phone carrier and location. If you are lucky, you might even see a profile picture. The information may not be correct in certain cases, but it is in most cases.
Use Third-party Apps
If any of the above methods didn’t work, then you’ll need to resort to third-party solutions. There are a slew of apps available in the market that can help you recover deleted phone numbers on your Android device.
Some of the most popular recovery apps are Dr. Fone Android Data Recovery, Fonepaw, and DroidKit. The majority of the recovery apps are free to use, but more advanced features are hidden behind a paywall. Most of these apps will scan your device to find traces of deleted phone numbers and then allow you to manually recover them on your Android phone.
If you decide to go this route, you must immediately put your smartphone on Airplane mode and stop using it. This is to avoid overwriting the data you are trying to recover.
Things to Know Before Using Third-Party Apps
Do note that recovery apps are not guaranteed to bring back your deleted phone numbers. Moreover, these apps may even require you to root your device because most of the deleted data is saved on the part of the system which can only be accessed with root privilege.
We don’t recommend rooting your device unless you’re a tech-savvy user and know what you are getting into. It should be mentioned that rooting can void the warranty of your smartphone and also expose it to potential security threats. If you still wish to root your device, you can easily do it with the help of the Magisk tool.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are deleted phone numbers still there on the device?
Yes, the deleted phone numbers remain on your device. However, the space they occupy is marked as “Deleted” and becomes available for new data to write on it. Once you add more data to your device, the deleted files are overwritten and removed permanently.
How do I create backup for my phone numbers?
If you have signed in to your device with a Google account, your contacts, app data, call history, and more is automatically backed up to your Google Drive. You can also manually enable backup for phone numbers by going to Settings on your phone and then to “Google -> Settings for Google apps -> Google Contacts sync -> Also sync device contacts -> Automatically back up & sync device contacts”.
Is it safe to use third-party recovery apps?
Yes, in most cases, third-party recovery apps are safe to use. They are meant to recover data and can do no harm to your system or your device. However, certain untrusted apps may steal privacy data from your phone or install spyware on it. Do your research before choosing a recovery app.
Image credit: Freepik All screenshots by Anurag
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