Contacts go hand in hand with email like cookies and milk. After I moved my email to iCloud, it was a pain having to lookup everyone’s email addresses in Google Contacts. The next obvious step was to move all my contacts to iCloud as well.
The process was straightforward and I only needed to assign contacts to groups inside the Mac Address Book application. It wasn’t a requirement, but I chose to replicate the grouping Google provided via tags. I now consider my Mac Address Book the authoritative source of my contacts though it is fully synchronized through iCloud to my other configured devices. I can update or add a contact on any device and that change is replicated across all the other devices virtually instantaneously.
Note: This is for migrating Google Contacts to Mac OSX Address Book.
- Login to your Google mail account, and switch to Contacts. Make sure you are looking at “My Contacts” or can otherwise see the contacts you want to migrate.
- Select each contact you want to migrate by ticking it’s check box. If you want all the Google contacts, you can skip this step.
- Click the “More” drop down button and select “Export…”.
- In the “Export Contacts” window: If you are exporting a selection of contacts select “Selected contacts”. If you are exporting all of your contacts select “All contacts”.
- Select “vCard format”.
- Click the “Export” button. A file named “contacts.vcf” will be downloaded to your desktop.
- Open System Preferences and select iCloud. If you are not signed in, do so.
- Tick the check box for Contacts.
- Close System Preferences.
- Open the Address Book application.
- Go to the Groups page by selecting View > Groups (or pressing Command-3).
- Select the group “All iCloud” by clicking it. You can double-click to select and open it as well.
- Now double-click the “contacts.vcf” file on the desktop that you exported earlier.
- Address Book will ask if you are sure you want to import x cards. Click “Add”. They will be imported into the currently selected group (which should be “All iCloud” if you followed these directions).
The rest is optional and is strictly for maintaining “groups” of contacts to make it easier to find one if you can remember the name, etc.
- In Address Book, go to the Groups page again by selecting View > Groups (or pressing Command-3).
- Single click the group “All iCloud”. Don’t open it by double clicking.
- Create the management group(s) you want by selecting File > New Group (or pressing Shift-Command-N). Give the group a name and press Return. The group will be created under the iCloud section. Repeat for each group you want to create.
- Again single click the group “All iCloud” so you can see all your contacts on the right.
- Drag and drop each contact to the proper group.
Note: If you have a very large number of contacts in Google and have them tagged in groups it could be quite cumbersome to manually re-assign all the groups in Address Book. You can shortcut that process by exporting just contacts for a particular Google group, importing them all into Address Book (the same way described above), then when assigning groups in Address Book select the “Last Import” group and select all contacts then drag them to the new iCloud group.
That’s it! Now all your contacts and groups will be synchronized across your Apple devices that have iCloud setup.
Next up: Google Calendar