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“Unfortunately, Contacts has stopped” error keeps popping up on Samsung Galaxy A3 [Troubleshooting Guide]

The error message “Unfortunately, Contacts has stopped” is actually a notification to let the user know that the default Contacts manager has crashed. It often occurs when the app itself is opened or when another app that’s linked to it tries to open it. The thing is that you cannot immediately determine if the problem is limited to the app alone or if it’s triggered by other apps. Some of our readers that use the Samsung Galaxy A3 reported to have encountered this issue that’s why we find it necessary to address it.

In this post, we will try to consider every possibility and rule them out one by one until we can easily determine what the problem is or what caused it. Then we will do some of the troubleshooting procedures that may fix the problem. If you are one of our readers who reached out to us or if you’re one of the owners of this phone and are currently bugged by a similar issue, continue reading as this post may be able to help you.

Before we proceed with our troubleshooting, if you are looking for a solution to a different problem, you may want to visit our A3 troubleshooting page for we have already addressed some of the most common problems with this device. Find issues that are similar with yours and use the solutions we suggested. If they don’t work for you or if you need further assistance, you can always contact us by filling up our questionnaire here.

Troubleshooting Galaxy A3 with “Contacts has stopped” error


Based on my experience, I can say that this is a minor problem which may involve only the app that’s specifically mentioned in the error. But taking into consideration the fact that Contacts is a pre-installed app, the problem could also be a more complicated issue with the firmware. I am certain a master reset will be able to fix the problem whatever it may be but let’s try a few troubleshooting procedures first before we reset your phone.

Clear the cache and data of Contacts app

The first thing that we have to do is reset the app that’s mentioned in the error message which means that you have to clear its cache and data. If it were just an app issue, this procedure alone is enough to fix the problem and get rid of the error message. That’s why it’s imperative that you do this procedure before anything else when dealing with this kind of problem:

  1. From the Home screen, tap the Apps icon.
  2. Find and touch Settings.
  3. Scroll to and tap Applications.
  4. Tap Application manager.
  5. Swipe left a few times to display contents of ALL tab.
  6. Find and touch Contacts.
  7. Tap Clear Cache.
  8. Touch Clear Data, then Clear to confirm your action.

After this, try to trigger the error message by opening the app itself or by using other apps that may have caused it to pop up. If the error still shows up, then move on to the next step.

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Run your phone in Safe mode

The purpose of this is to determine if the cause of the problem is a third-party app. By running your device in safe mode, you’re temporarily disabling all downloaded apps so if the error doesn’t show up in this mode, then it’s clear that it’s triggered by one or some of the apps you installed on your phone. Follow these steps to boot your Galaxy A3 in safe mode:

  1. Turn the device off.
  2. Press and hold the Power key past the screen with the device name.
  3. When ‘SAMSUNG’ appears on the screen, release the Power key.
  4. Immediately after releasing the Power key, press and hold the Volume down key.
  5. Continue to hold the Volume down key until the device finishes restarting.
  6. Safe mode will display in the bottom left corner of the screen.
  7. Release the Volume down key when you see ‘Safe Mode’.

Try to trigger the error while the phone in this environment. If the error doesn’t show up, the next thing you have to do is find the app that’s causing the problem and then uninstall it. You must begin your search from apps you recently installed. Uninstall them one by one and reboot your phone in normal mode to verify if the error still shows up. This is how you uninstall an app from your phone:

  1. From any Home screen, tap the Apps icon.
  2. Tap Settings.
  3. Tap Applications.
  4. Tap the desired application in the default list or tap Menu icon > Show system apps to display preinstalled apps.
  5. Tap Uninstall.
  6. Tap Uninstall again to confirm.

However, if the error still pops up in safe mode, then it’s time to go after the settings and the firmware itself.

Reset all settings in your phone

This is one of the most effective methods in fixing minor firmware issues including problems that resulted from incorrect settings. It’s safe to do because none of your files and data will be deleted. Before we move on to troubleshooting the firmware, this should be the first thing you should do:

  1. From a Home screen, swipe up or down from the center of the display to access the apps screen.
  2. Navigate: Settings Settings icon > Backup and reset.
  3. From the Reset section, tap Reset settings.
  4. Review the info then tap RESET SETTINGS.
  5. If presented, enter the current PIN, password, or pattern.
  6. To confirm, review the info then tap RESET SETTINGS.

Wipe cache partition

If the error continues to bug you after resetting all settings, then it’s time to go after the system caches. These are temporary files created by the firmware which helps make your phone run smoothly. Sometimes they become corrupt or obsolete and that’s performance issues including app crashes may occur. So delete these files so they’ll be replaced with new ones:

  1. Turn off the device.
  2. Press and hold the Volume Up key and the Home key, then press and hold the Power key.
  3. When the device logo screen displays, release only the Power key.
  4. When the Android logo displays, release all keys (‘Installing system update’ will show for about 30 – 60 seconds before showing the Android system recovery menu options).
  5. Press the Volume down key several times key to highlight ‘wipe cache partition’.
  6. Press the Power key to select.
  7. Press the Volume down key to highlight ‘yes’ and press the Power key to select.
  8. When the wipe cache partition is complete, ‘Reboot system now’ is highlighted.
  9. Press the Power key to restart the device.

Continue your observation after this to know if the error disappears. If it still shows however, then you have no other choice but to reset your phone.

Backup your files and data and then reset your Galaxy A3

The reset will fix this problem but then you will have to take time finding and making a backup of your important files and data and it doesn’t stop there as you would need to restore them to your phone after the reset. That’s the reason why this method, even if it’s effective in dealing with this problem, always comes at the end.

After the backup, disable the Factory Reset Protection so that you won’t be locked out of your device. Once everything is ready, follow these steps to reset your device:

  1. Back up data on the internal memory. If you have signed into a Google account on the device, you have activated Anti-theft and will need your Google credentials to finish the Master reset.
  2. Turn off the device.
  3. Press and hold the Volume Up key and the Home key, then press and hold the Power key.
  4. When the device logo screen displays, release only the Power key
  5. When the Android logo displays, release all keys (‘Installing system update’ will show for about 30 – 60 seconds before showing the Android system recovery menu options).
  6. Press the Volume down key several times key to highlight ‘wipe data / factory reset.’
  7. Press Power button to select.
  8. Press the Volume down key until ‘Yes — delete all user data’ is highlighted.
  9. Press Power button to select and start the master reset.
  10. When the master reset is complete, ‘Reboot system now’ is highlighted.
  11. Press the Power key to restart the device.

Again, the error message “Unfortunately, Contacts has stopped” is a minor problem and can be fixed by a reset. I hope that this troubleshooting guide can help you somehow. If you still need our help after this, feel free to contact us.

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