5 Tricky Ways to Automate iOS Contacts Using IFTTT

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Computers are meant to make our lives easier by automating the simple tasks. So there’s no reason you should ever have to make a note to email a new contact your information or back up your address book.

The site If This Then That (IFTTT) has amassed quite the following of folks who want to automate as much as possible. There are thousands of possible IFTTT “recipes” out there to help with just about everything in your digital life, but the best ones deal with contacts.

Check out these five tricky ways to automate your iOS contacts and start getting more done with less work.

Note: Each of these recipes requires you to activate the associated channels before using them. You must download the IFTTT app for iOS devices and authorize each channel that is iOS-specific there, too.

1. Back Up iOS Contacts to a Google Spreadsheet

IFTTT logos for iOS Contacts and Google Drive channels

Just about every email service allows you to export your contacts as a spreadsheet, but how many automatically build this spreadsheet so it’s available to you at a moment’s notice?

This recipe will save every new contact you add to your iOS address book to a spreadsheet on Google Drive.

The best part is that it isn’t a true sync, as items are never removed from the spreadsheet. So if you change or delete a contact by mistake you just need to go back to the Google spreadsheet and find it again.

2. Add New Contacts to My Calendar

IFTTT logos for iOS Contacts and Google Calendar channels

Wouldn’t it be nice if you could easily remember which people you added to your iPhone contacts list over the weekend? Maybe you were at a party and met a very special someone, or maybe you added a new business contact and you’re just having a hard time remembering her name.

With this recipe you’ll never again forget who got added to your contact list. This recipe adds the name of newly added iOS contacts to your Google Calendar so you can quickly and easily see whom you added on what day.

Duplicate contacts killing your productivity? See how Scrubly can help in this 100-second video.

3. Email Me New iOS Contact Information

IFTTT logos for iOS Contacts and Email channels

Did you ever go to a work conference and add some new contacts to your iPhone, only to forget who they were? Worse yet, if you met a special someone at a bar or coffee shop and added him or her to your phone, it would be pretty easy to forget the person’s name and let it get lost amid all your contacts.

So how do you solve this problem? Just use this recipe and get an email with all your new contacts in it.

Now you not only have a way to save their information to remind you to call or email the next day, but you can also go back and search your email to find out whom you met on that specific day or night.

4. Back Up Contacts to Dropbox

IFTTT logos for iOS Contacts and Dropbox channels

We shouldn’t have to tell you that backing up your contacts is important. But sometimes when we do things manually, important tasks get left by the wayside.

This is why anything that’s automated is great. It works and you don’t have to think about it until you need it. While iCloud does a pretty good job at backing up your contacts, having a second backup is always a good idea.

Use this recipe to add new contacts to a text file saved in Dropbox. Now, every time you add a new contact it’ll be saved to Dropbox as well.

This only works for new contacts. But if you’re constantly adding new people to your address book, this can really save you if iCloud ever fails.

5. Send an Email to New Contacts

IFTTT logos for iOS Contacts and Gmail channels

While canned responses and automated emails can border on spam, they can be a really useful tool when used correctly.

For example, take this recipe that automatically emails anyone you add to your address book.

Instead of using a canned “It was nice meeting you” response, you can make the email contain all your contact info and, best of all, a picture for them to use in your contact information. You could even go so far as to stick your vCard on a server and link to it in the email. Now you know they have your information correct.

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