Apple iPhone users may encounter a problem where contact names are missing from text message notifications. The problem is commonly solved with these fixes.
Fix 1 – Edit One Name
This is the most common fix. Open the Contacts app and edit any of the names. Make any small change and save the contact. This will “refresh” the contacts database and often fix the problem with missing names.
Fix 2 – Restart iMessages
- Open “Settings” > “Messages” and turn “iMessages” to “Off“.
- Restart the iPhone.
- Open “Settings” > “Messages” and turn “iMessages” to “On“.
Fix 3 – Reset Syncing
- Open “Settings” > “Contacts” > “Accounts“.
- For any accounts you have, (like iCloud, Exchange, Yahoo, etc.), select the account, then set “Contacts” syncing to “Off“.
- Restart the iPhone.
- Return back under “Settings” > “Contacts” > “Accounts” > account name, and toggle the setting back to “On”.
I’m having this issue with my iPhone SE – IOS 15.7.1 I tried all fixes – but cannot do Fix 3 as there is no sync option for Settings – Contacts – Accounts. I still have a mix of names and numbers. On top of that, some contacts have disappeared completely (coworkers, my sister)
Dale Katz says
I do not recommend this on iPhone 8 with iOS 15.0. Fix 1 and Fix 2 did not work. When I tried Fix three, even more of my names disappeared from my Messages (more of my Messages contacts show up only as phone numbers, not names).
Andy M says
followed instructions and it works, many thanks
Thanks #2 worked for me
So frustrating I literally added several duplicate contacts in my phone over and over again as I tried to get it to stick it will be nice to know going forward my phone is less of a piece of crap. Smart phones my a…
maxwell smart says
Thanks. Fix 2 worked perfectly on an iphone 12.
Dean Wainwright says
This has happened to me this evening, in messages all of the names have been replaced by the numbers and instead of them displayed as 07984 they are now displayed in messages only as +447984. WhatsApp is working fine and when I go into contacts all contacts are stored how they were but incoming text messages or iMessages are coming in starting with +44. Ive tried all the fixes but nothings working.
I have the same problem. iPhone 11 and all of a sudden I just get phone numbers and no names on messages. There has to be a way to fix this.
Deb Paschal says
I’ve tried all the fixes and I still only have numbers on test messages, any other suggestions
When I go to settings – contacts – accounts – icloud – contacts I am asked if i want to delete all contacts from my home. Am i supposed to do this? Will they come back when i turn the phone on and toggle ‘on ‘
AMIT MISHRA says
THANKS IT JUST WORKED
After trying a number of other complicated “solutions “ to the problem of missing names in IMessage with NO results, I followed instructions for Fix 1 and….success!!! Thanks so much!
Worked like a charm! Thanks so much…this happens every now and then and it’s very much a first world problem, but still, super annoying ?
Doreen Choquette says
My message contacts are suddenly missing, My email contacts are still there.
Morven Seib says
This post did not help at all. I have just updated to OS 11.0 on my iPhone and the contact names on ‘Messages’ have been cleared ~ I just have the phone numbers. Your article says to go to ‘Settings>Contacts>Accounts’ but in my ‘Contacts>Settings’ there is no ‘Accounts. All I have is the following: Siri & Search, Sort Order, Display order, Short Name, My Info and at the bottom in blue ‘Import SIM Contacts’ so your suggestions are no help to me.