I am using android, and the I have used my google contacts to sync to this, when trying to delete an account, it shows "You can not delete contacts from read only accounts, but you can hide them", When I search the net, I have seen answers like 'clear the contacts and dialer app and again sync' and doing so every time I lost the call history.

So now if I want to delete a contact in my phone, I first go to google contact and delete from there and again sync.

So if we want to delete an contact from contacts in google do we need to delete this from google contacts and again sync? How can I delete a contact in google contact from android phone? and if we hide the contact in phone, where can I see hidden contacts?


5 Answers 5


as far as I know, these "read only accounts" relate to other accounts you have set up in Android (e.g. Facebook, WhatsApp, Viber, etc.). These accounts are (usually) synced by default when you set them up and the respective contacts are displayed in your contacts. You have several options to manage these contacts: 1. in Android under contacts go to settings and select "Contacts to display" - here you can chose which account to include in your contacts list. You can also chose a mix of them under "Customize" 2. to manage 'read only' accounts, you may go online to your respective services (e.g. Facebook, WhatsApp, Viber, etc.) and add/modify/delete the contacts there. 3. the best way to manage your Google accounts, at least for me, is still to edit them directly in your contact list at gmail.com.

Hope this helps a bit.

  • so Hide means hiding in the respective account?
    – Jiju John
    Jan 12, 2016 at 12:52
  • 1
    so when we want to delete a contact, we first need to delete from google contacts and then clear the contacts in contact app and dialer app and then sync? Delete a contact in google contacts remove automatically in android also when sync?
    – Jiju John
    Jan 12, 2016 at 13:07

If you want to delete the contact:

  1. Tap on a contact you want to delete
  2. Tap the overflow icon on the top-right (like when you want to edit the details)
  3. Choose "View linked contacts"
  4. Tap on "Unlink", and then "Unlink" again
  5. After that, go back and you can safely delete your contact without losing those that you didn't want to lose

As Frank said, most of the read only contacts come from third party apps that access your contacts to identify your friends (like WhatsApp, Viber, etc.,). These contacts are automatically created by such apps and they may or may not show up in your contacts list.

If you want to delete the read only contact, you have to either delete the main contact (not the linked one) or you have to uninstall the app.

If you want to delete the read only contact just because they show up as duplicates, you can try merging the contacts.

There are third party apps to merge multiple duplicates at once if the function isn't inbuilt.

Hope this helps.

Edit: I encountered a situation where there were multiple read-only contacts, but no original contact. Not sure what caused this situation. The only way I got rid of them is by clearing the Contacts Storage app's data. Use this as a last resort. Also make sure you have a backup of contacts before clearing. It will also clear your call history.


If you click on the contact itself and delete the link accounts attached once you do that back out and delete like normal and the contact should be deleted finally.


I got fed up working around it, I just deleted whatsapp add (in my case its what was linked) then deleted the contact and added it with the right info I wanted to be saved. then just reinstalled the whatsapp app and that's it be aware when you are adding this person again to your contact list it may prepolute old info like G+ account so i deleted anything but the email and the phone number to make sure I keep the right info

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .