How to create iCloud contact groups for iPhone, iPad (Mini, Air) and iPod Touch

This post shows you how to create contact groups in iCloud and easily send emails and texts to lists of people using your iOS device.

If you’re like me, there are groups of people that you send texts and emails to all the time. It used to be that every time I needed to contact a given group I had to type each of their names individually into the To: field in the Messages app or my favorite email app. However, I recently discovered an easy way to create groups of contacts and quickly send them messages all at once in iOS. Doing this saves a lot of time! In this post, I’ll first show you how to create contact groups in iCloud on your Mac or PC. Second, I’ll show you how to view contact groups in iOS. And third, I’ll show you how to send messages to contact groups using iOS.

I. Create Contact Groups in iCloud on your Mac or PC

Unfortunately, Apple hasn’t included the ability to create contact groups through iCloud in iOS yet. I’m not sure I understand why, as it seems like it would be so easy to do. However, there is a way to create contact groups using your Mac or PC that will then show up on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch via iCloud. Let’s check it out.

Note that if you have a Mac computer you can also create and manage contact groups in the Contacts app. This post will show you how to do it using iCloud online, though, since its more universal.

1. Sign InStep 1: Sign in to iCloud on your Mac or PC – If you use iCloud to back up your iOS device and use Photo Streams, then you can also access iCloud via a web browser on your Mac or PC. You’ll need to do so to create a contact group. Open up a web browser on your Mac or PC and go to www.icloud.com. Then, enter your Apple ID and password. This is the same login information you use to purchase apps from the App Store on your iOS or Mac device.

2. Home Screen (Edit)3.Contacts (Edit)Step 2: Click on Contacts – This will load the Contacts web app and display your iCloud contacts. If you’ve chosen to use iCloud to store your contacts on your iOS device, these should be a mirror image of the contacts on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch.

 

 

4. New Group (Edit)5. New GroupStep 3: Create a new contact group and give it a name – Click the + button at the bottom of the screen and then click on New Group. Then, enter a name for the contact group into the text box. Your new group will now be ready to go, though there won’t be anyone in it yet.

 

 

 

6. Add Contat (Edit)7. GroupStep 4: Add a contact to the group – Click on All Contacts to get back to your main contact group. Then, find a contact you’d like to add to the group and click and drag their name into the group you created. The contact will then appear in the group when you click on it. Repeat this process to add more contacts to the group and build it up! If you’d like to add more contacts to the group in the future, simply log in to iCloud on your Mac or PC again and repeat this step.

 

8. Delete Contact (Edit)How to remove contacts from your group – If you’d like to remove a contact from your group simply click on the group, select the person’s name, click the gear at the bottom of the screen, and click Delete. This method simply removes the person from your group – their information will still be available in the main All Contacts group.

9. Delete Group (Edit)10. Delete Group (Edit)How to delete a contact group – 
If you’d like to delete the entire group, click on the the group name in the left column, select the gear at the bottom of the screen, and click Delete. You will then receive a message asking you to confirm that you’d like to delete the group. Click Delete again and the group will be gone. Just like deleting individual contacts from a group, deleting an entire group still leaves that group’s contacts in the main All Contacts group.

II. How to view contact groups in iOS

Now that we’ve set up a contact group on our Mac or PC using iCloud, let’s take a look at how to view the group on our iOS device.

11. Home Screen (Edit)Step 1: Open Phone or Contacts app – Either one of these apps works for accessing your contacts. If you use the Phone app, make sure you’re on the Contacts tab.          

 

 

 

 

 

12. Contacts (Edit)Step 2: Tap on Groups in the top left            

 

 

 

 

 

 

13. Groups (Edit)14. Group (Edit)15. ContactStep 3: Select the group you wish to view – In order to view only the group you just set up, you’ll want to make sure that there is a check mark only next to the group’s name. Then hit the Done button. You should see the group you set up displayed on your iOS device! Tapping on one of the contacts allows you to view and edit their contact information.          

 

 

 

 

 

III. Send messages to contact groups using iOS

Let’s take a look at how to send a message to the people in our contact group. This method works with the Messages app, the stock Mail app, and many other iOS apps that integrate the use of contacts. For this example, we’ll use the Messages app to send a text to a group.

16. Home Screen (Edit)Step 1: Open the Messages app

 

 

 

 

 

 

17. Messages (Edit)Step 2: Tap the Compose button in the top right

 

 

 

 

 

18. New Message (Edit)Step 3: Tap on the button to add a contact             

 

 

 

 

 

19. Add Contact (Edit)Step 4: Tap on Groups in the top left            

 

 

 

 

 

 

20. Coworkers (Edit)Step 5: Select only the group you just set up            

 

 

 

 

 

21. One Added (Edit)22. Several AddedStep 6: Tap on the names you wish to add – This will add the person to the message. If they have more than one phone number (or email address if you’re using an email app) you’ll be asked to choose the right one. Then tap the + button again to add more contacts from the group to the message.

Step 7: Send your message!

Using contact groups through iCloud on your Mac, PC, or iOS device makes sending messages to frequently contacted groups quick and easy. Give it a try and see for yourself!

 

3 thoughts on “How to create iCloud contact groups for iPhone, iPad (Mini, Air) and iPod Touch

  1. You have provided the keys to the puzzle that I have been trying to solve for ages – thanks to this superb article it was a snap to set up my contact groups and learn how to manage them.

    • This is actually quite easy. All you need to do is make sure that your iCloud contacts are being used as your primary contacts (you are logged into iCloud in the Settings App and the Contacts tab is switched on). Then, go to the Facebook Settings in the Settings App and scroll down to the bottom where it says, “Update All Contacts.” Tap this and all of your Facebook contacts will be merged. Let me know if you have any more questions on this.

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