My daughter's Samsung Galaxy S4 has a faulty screen - it is completely non-functional. As it died the remainder of the phone functionality appeared to be completely fine. Now the screen is dead. So there is no way to see what is displayed nor interact with it.

She got a new phone and was dismayed to learn that most of her contacts did not appear. Apparently, unbeknownst to her, they were saved to the phone (not SIM) rather than Google.

Is there a way for her to recover those contacts from the screenless, but otherwise still-functioning, phone?

It does not appear that simply connecting it to USB will work. I thought about installing over-the-air the app AirDroid - but it appears it is too late to do that, since some of the setup appears to need to be done on the phone itself.

Any other solutions?


  • If the phone was not linked to a Google account you are likely out of luck considering the device won't even turn in.
    – Ramhound
    Sep 21 '15 at 13:16
  • @Ramhound - as I wrote, it is linked to a google account - and those contacts sync to the new phone. The problem is with the contacts that were stored on the device - which appear to be most of them... Also, as I wrote, it does turn on - but the screen is blank because it is broken.
    – yosh m
    Sep 21 '15 at 20:06
  • This is theoretical, proceed at your own risk after satisfactory search: I've heard that Galaxy devices comes with unlocked bootloaders. If that's the case then you may be able to flash (using PC) a custom Recovery like TWRP on the device without risking the device to be automatically getting reset. Then boot into TWRP. TWRP should by-default give access to contacts database which is where the contacts are stored.
    – Firelord
    Sep 22 '15 at 9:37

If the USB port were working on the phone it would probably be easiest to copy any or all of the phones data with a pc, however I surmise the screen defect was caused by the notorious shorted USB connector on Samsung phones. This being the case if you have another Samsung s4 5 or 6 one of the pieces of preinstalled softwares allows you to place 2 phones back to back to copy your contacts and settings perhaps that could help you.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.