Solutions for Samsung Galaxy S5 “Unfortunately, contacts has stopped” error [Part 1]

s5 contacts

Solutions for Samsung Galaxy S5 “Unfortunately, contacts has stopped” error [Part 1] is intended to be the start of a dedicated troubleshooter series for any contacts-related problems. We think the issue is as pervasive as it now appears so we have decided to publish a special thread for the problem.

The issues covered in this series should include Contact app problems like freezing, app failure to load, screen freezing due to contact app issue, to mention a few. We will continue to publish these issues as long as you keep sending us your emails about them. And speaking of email, make sure to use the one we provided below when letting us know about your issue.


Problem #1: Samsung Galaxy S5 has multiple issues after updating including “Unfortunately your contacts have stopped working” error

Hello. I did the new update and at first it worked great, except for I keep getting an error “Unfortunately your contacts have stopped working”. I am sure that is not the exact wording, because of course when I want to send the email the phone works perfectly.

Also, I have a 64GB SD card. When I take a picture it automatically saves to my SD card but yet even when I move the app to my SD card it still takes up space on my phone. So why have a large SD card? I thought the purpose of the SD card expandable storage was to free up room on the phone. My phone lags when you go from screen to screen or app to app. How can I fix this, besides deleting my apps?

Thanks. — Michelle

Solution: Hi Michelle. “Unfortunately your contacts have stopped working” message implies that your operating system is having trouble loading the Contacts app for some reason. This can happen due to a corrupted cache or malfunctioning app itself so what you can do in this case is delete the app’s cache and data.

Deleting the cache first is always recommended as this will not erase the app’s settings and data like your contacts list. Deleting the Contact app’s data is like reinstalling the app so will lose everything associated with it. Delete the contacts apps only if you have already created a copy of all your contacts. For steps on how to delete an app’s cache and data, please see this post.

For your second question, the answer depends on the app you are trying to move to an SD card. Many apps are designed to be installed only in the phone’s internal storage for stability and information security. Moving these apps to an SD card or even only components of them can cause problems as the system may now find critical file directory missing. Never move a file or folder of an app if you are not sure of what you are doing.

As end users, there’s little to nothing that we can do about how an app is designed or stored in the phone as they are decisions made by developers. If you want to clear more space in your phone’s internal memory, transfer only files that you have created like photos, videos, music, among other things to the SD card. 16GB is more than enough to store the operating system files, as well as some of your apps.

For SD card issues check our related posts:

Problem #2: Samsung Galaxy S5 won’t load contacts keeps on showing “updating contacts” error after a Lollipop update

Hi there. I’ve got a Samsung S5 and I have downloaded the latest software. For some reason now, I can’t access my contacts and it just keeps on saying “updating contacts” continually. What can i do to fix this as it is really pissing me off?  I can’t access my contacts either. If I start putting in number some contacts come yet if i put in full number the contacts name pops up.

Please can you help me before i throw this phone at the wall? Cheers. — Jamie

Solution: Hi Jamie. This problem may be similar to Michelle’s above so start by clearing the Contact app’s app. If it still won’t load after deleting the cache, you can also delete the phone’s cache partition. If that won’t resolve the issue either, that’s the time that you want to delete the Contact app’s data.

Problem #3: Samsung Galaxy S5 still displays “Unfortunately, Contacts has stopped” error after doing some troubleshooting and factory reset

Wow-My Galaxy S5 has been trying my patience with not being able to make phone calls with the seemingly common “Unfortunately, Contacts has stopped” error. I tried everything I could find from clearing the cache on contacts and clearing Contacts data.  I finally bit the bullet and did the factory reset (after removing my SD card for safe keeping).

IT WORKED but only for a few hours then re-appeared.

My best guess is that I had auto-updates turned on for APPS and some app update kicked in and is causing this?

I’m doing the reset now for the 5th time but I’ve turned off auto-update.

I also followed the clear cache and safe mode info on your site – safe mode still gives the error as does clearing contacts data and cache

IF I get this to work this time any ideas on how to identify the rogue app causing this? Thanks much. — Leo

Solution: Hi Leo. If the error does not appear immediately after doing a factory reset, a problematic app may be causing this trouble. Try to install third party apps individually and make sure to give the phone at least an hour for observation before installing another one. There is no automated process to rule out the rogue app in this case so make sure you have a long day ahead of you if you want to do this. Start with the apps you seldom use. Always make sure that an app is running its most recent version before proceeding to install the next one.

Problem #4: Samsung Galaxy S5 unable to make a call after updating to Lollipop because the screen would freeze showing “Unfortunately contacts have stopped”

Hello. A month after I completed the Lollipop update I no longer can make calls from my Samsung Galaxy S5. I receive error message advising “Unfortunately contacts have stopped” and the screen disappears. I would greatly appreciate any guidance on how to fix this.

Thanks! — Trish

Solution: Hi Trish. Please do the same set of troubleshooting steps as suggested above. The issue boils down to either a corrupt app cache or third party apps. If deleting the cache and cache partition won’t help, please follow the additional steps Leo did–boot up the phone in Safe Mode and perform a factory reset.

Problem #5: Samsung Galaxy S5 won’t update and randomly freezes contacts app

My S5 has a continual notification saying firmware update not completed select to retry update. It will not do anything but try to update but nothing happens. Occasionally a popup says contacts stopped also. Any help appreciated. Thank you. Galaxy S5 on Sprint. — Don

Solution: Hi Don. Is your phone running the most recent Android version? To check, simply follow these steps:

  • Go to Settings.
  • Go to About device.
  • Check the Software version.

The most current software version of Sprint S5 as of this writing (release date 05/05/2015) should say G900PVPU2BOD3.

To check for available software updates manually:

  • Go to Settings.
  • Tap System Update icon.
  • Tap Update now.

If there are no available updates for you at this time, nothing will happen when you touch the Update now button.

You can uncheck Auto update below Update now if you don’t want to receive annoying system update notifications.

For the random pop-up notification you’re getting that contacts have stopped, please do the troubleshooting steps above.

That’s it for now. We hope that some of the cases have been addressed by our solutions for Samsung Galaxy S5 “Unfortunately, contacts has stopped” error post. Don’t forget to send us your feedback via the email below.


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If you are one of the users who encounters a problem with your device, let us know. We offer solutions for Android-related problems for free so if you have an issue with your Android device, simply contact us by email at [email protected] and we will try to publish our answers in the next posts. We cannot guarantee a quick response so if your issue is time sensitive, please find another way to resolve your problem. 

When describing the problem, please be as detailed as possible so we can easily pinpoint a relevant solution. If you can, kindly include the exact error messages you are getting to give us an idea where to start.

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2 Replies to “Solutions for Samsung Galaxy S5 “Unfortunately, contacts has stopped” error [Part 1]”

  1. Had the same problem. It turns out my contacts froze because of an App. In my case it was “Linked In” mobile app. I UNINSTALLED IT. And works fine now.

  2. I have a Samsung Galaxy S5. Current Software: G900VVRU2BOG5
    My issue is that my text messages (out of nowhere) have stopped displaying the Contact Name. They only display the number of saved Contacts. Also, the colored Icon that displays the first letter of the Contact, now displays a hashtag.

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