How can I add and manage contacts on a SIM card with an Android phone (HTC Magic)? I'm aware of 1 application which is capable of doing this but it cost 4€ for SIMPLY managing SIM contacts o_O

6 Answers 6


The default (well, default on my Samsung Galaxy S - I guess default in Android doesn't mean much) contact manager can do a part of this. When creating a new contact, it gives the option of storing it on the SIM, Phone memory, or a linked account (like Google).

There's the option of copying contacts from SIM to Phone or Phone to SIM (Contacts->Menu->more -> Copy contacts). Import/Export is in the same spot.

I know these suggestions aren't quite what you're looking for. I don't know if contacts can be stored on a SIM card in different ways depending on the Phone. From what I've seen the software that comes with Android phones might (depending on manufacturer) let you move contacts around.

  • 2
    on the T-Mobile G2, you can only "Import from SIM card". You cannot, apparently, put contact data into the SIM card.
    – benc
    Feb 5, 2011 at 4:36
  • @benc HTC models some of them marketed as t-mobile gX (x for version) do not have option to back to sim, but you can use free application like contact2sim to work around
    – peter_budo
    Jul 29, 2011 at 15:32
  • @cofiem update for Android 10: SIM and phone memory are not a storage option anymore -- it lets you save contacts only on an email (like gmail) account (I am on Xiaomi A2)
    – jjrr
    Oct 22, 2020 at 14:12

I wanted to delete some contacts on my SIM card on my HTC Sensation. I tried and tried and it didn't work. So I took out my old Nokia phone and it can read and write to the SIM card. Deleted the contacts I didn't want. It worked.


In general, don't store your contacts on the SIM card. There is no advantage in doing so. Modern smartphones are usually only able to import/export contacts stored on the SIM card.

The contact App from Android 4.0 on provides a feature which lets you import your contacts form SIM card to either Google contacts (which I highly recommend) or simply local phone contacts.

Open Contacts > Menu > Import/export > Import from SIM card

Furthermore the "Messaging" app of Android 4.0 is able to mange the text messages stored on the SIM card.

There are only a few very narrow reasons for storing contacts on a SIM. Some like to be able to swap the SIM card into a small feature phone when performing certain activities (like trail running).

However, note that contacts stored on the SIM card are unprotected. Everyone who has access to the SIM card can read your contacts. This impacts your and your contacts privacy.

  • Later Android versions’ messaging app seem to have long lost this option. Now there are a bunch of crappy SIM card apps that constantly show ads and do not work, but SIM contacts by Mitali Parekh seems promising. I’ll comment after testing it.
    – peterhil
    Jun 12, 2019 at 21:30
  • 2
    SIM Phonebook is better, and allows multiple selection and mass deletion.
    – peterhil
    Jun 12, 2019 at 22:45
  • The SIM contacts app did not have copying, importing or exporting.
    – peterhil
    Jun 12, 2019 at 22:46
  • @peterhil Thanks for the link. An app that does what the OP is asking for without ads, in-apps purchases or abusive permissions. Why don't you add as an answer? For me this is the answer.
    – cdlvcdlv
    Aug 27, 2019 at 8:37

Is there some specific purpose or feature that would necessitate using the SIM?

If you have an Android phone then presumably you have a Google account. Any contacts added to your Google phone will by sync'd automatically to the signed in Google account unless you turn that function off. Why not just use Google to manage them? Then you can keep your SIM and sd card free of unneeded data and if you lose or trade up your phone you never lose your contacts. They would still exist in Google. Plus you can sign into Gmail to manage contacts that way.

  • 4
    I want to keep contacts private, can't access the internet and need backwards compatibility of contacts with dumb phones
    – lambdor
    Aug 16, 2010 at 20:44
  • Well I can assure you your contacts are private, only you and anyone that knows your account info could access them. You could try this app: androlib.com/android.application.com-happydroid-c2s-qpxm.aspx. I haven't tried any of them myself, but if you search I'm sure you would have a couple to choose from.
    – Webs
    Aug 17, 2010 at 2:36
  • the contacts hoster will know too. i tried c2s, but adding contacts is only available in the Pro version.
    – lambdor
    Aug 17, 2010 at 16:26
  • That app is the only one I'm aware of. If you do some Google searching you might find others. The host of your contacts knows in the sense that it is their hosting, servers, and databases. But no one at the company has access to it and anyone that would, would be strictly monitored and would only have access to the database which would be encrypted and used for maintenance reasons only. There is no big brother conspiracy here, its just a matter of cost/benefit. And the benefit for Google to have and know contacts is smaller than the cost. If you have sources stating otherwise please post.
    – Webs
    Aug 17, 2010 at 18:07
  • 2
    @Webs: Yeah, because data leaks can never ever ever happen. Riiiiiiight. Jun 2, 2013 at 9:28

For managing your SIM contacts you can try SIM Contacts Manager.

  • +1 I purchased and used this app to help me delete unwanted (all) contacts from my SIM card which kept showing up as contacts in my messages (SMS) apps. Worked just fine on my HTC Sensation. Link to app in android market: <removed>
    – spong
    Jun 19, 2011 at 20:59

New (manual) contacts should get backed up if your gmail account is linked, and they should show up in your gmail contacts.

But my old ones (on sim and phone before email was linked) did not. I had to copy the ones from my sim and phone to my SDcard by going into contacts (people) then menu -> export to SD (as for example SIM.vcf).

And after that menu -> import to (my email) linked gmail address. And i just told it to import all vcf files on the SD.

And that was it, they were now all in my gmail contacts.

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