The Contacts app is one of the most basic and overlooked parts of the iPhone. How else are you going to remember all of those phone numbers?
You probably get the gist of how to use the Contacts app — it’s pretty simple. But there are actually a variety of organizational features built into Contacts, including a couple neat things you can do to make it easier to call or text people on your contacts list. Those features include nicknames and relationships.
Here’s what you should know. Continue reading to learn about 4 iPhone Contacts Tricks You'll Wish You Knew Sooner.
4 Add a Nickname
It’s useful to have somebody’s full name listed under their contact card. Some people don’t prefer this, but it can certainly help differentiate between contacts with the same name. But there’s also another option: nicknames. Basically, you can keep a contact’s first and last name in the contact card while using a nickname for most purposes. It's especially useful when using Siri to contact a friend that you're not used to calling by their formal first name. Here’s how.
- Open the Contacts app. Alternatively, open the Phone app and tap Contacts.
- Tap the contact card you’d like to add a nickname to.
- Then, tap on Edit.
- Scroll down until you see add field. Tap on it.
- Select Nickname from the menu that appears.
- You should see Nickname appear as a new field at the top of the contact card now. Simply tap on it to add one.
3 Toggle Short Names On or Off
Recent versions of iOS will use what Apple calls Short Name — essentially, using a person’s first name in various contexts rather than their entire name. Whichever mode you prefer is totally dependent on your tastes. You can edit this behavior by going to:
- Tap the toggle next to Short Name so that it’s disabled (or enabled) depending on your liking.
2 Prefer Nicknames
As long as you have the Prefer Nicknames feature toggled on, you’ll see your contacts' nicknames (rather than first names) appear within most apps. You can edit that by going to:
- Short Name.
- Make sure that Prefer Nicknames at the bottom is switched on, or switched off to your liking.
1 Add Relationships to Your Contacts
The other handy organizational feature built into the Contacts app is relationships. Basically, it’s the relationship a particular contact has to you or another contact.
When you add a relationship to your own contact card, it makes contacting that person a bit easier in some circumstances. You can invoke Siri and say “call my husband,” for example.
The easiest way to set a relationship is to use Siri.
- Say “Hey Siri” to invoke the digital assistant. Alternatively, press and hold the Home button or the Side button.
- Tell Siri the relationship you’d like to save. For example, say “Tim Cook is my manager.” Make sure that you say the full contact name as it appears in Contacts.
- Siri will ask you to confirm the relationship. Either say “Yes,” or tap the Yes button when it appears.
- You can also add custom titles for people with the same relationship — if you have more than one son, you can say “oldest,” “youngest,” or “middle” son.
While you can use Siri, there’s also the option of manually adding relationships using the Contacts app.
- Open Contacts.
- Find and tap on your own contact card — it’ll say “me” by it.
- Tap the Edit button.
- Tap on add related name.
- From here, you can tap on the Label (i.e. mother) and add, or use one of the default labels, or create a custom one.
- Then, tap on the “i” icon and pick a contact from the list.
- Tap Done when you’re finished.