Why Does My iPhone Contact Say Maybe?

Have you ever received a call or a text from a contact that said "Maybe" before the name? Don't worry. There's nothing wrong with your iPhone, and your security hasn’t been compromised.

Have you ever received a call or a text and your phone identified the contact as “Maybe: [Name]"? Your first impression is that it might be creepy or that your phone has been compromised. You don’t have to worry about that—it has nothing to do with your phone’s security. It has everything to do with how smart your phone actually is.

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What Does Maybe Mean for iPhone Contacts?

In this case, it means that your device has gathered enough information about that phone number that it believes it knows who is calling, but for security and privacy reasons, it will suggest the contact as "Maybe:" until you decide to add that contact.

The operating system scans your email and text messages and uses clues from them to determine who is calling. The best thing is, all of that information stays right on your phone, so your privacy remains protected. There's no sharing of the information, 

How to Turn Off iPhone Suggested Contacts

You may not be comfortable with your contacts being suggested as "Maybe." If you decide that the suggested contacts iPhone makes are not for you, we can help you turn off contact suggestions so that you can feel more comfortable. Use the tips below to troubleshoot or disable contact suggestions.

    Turn Off Siri Suggestions

    Stop suggested contacts by disabling Siri Suggestions. While this feature can come in handy for helping you keep up with routines and habits, disabling it will stop contacts suggestions.

    Related: How to Customize Siri Suggestions and Widgets on the Widget Screen

    Create A New Contact from the Contact Suggestion

    1. Open the Phone app and make sure you're on the Recents tab.
    2. Tap the info icon to the right of the phone number of the suggested contact.

      Open the Phone appTao the info icon to save a new contact from the suggested contact
    3. Tap Create New Contact and fill in the information fields. 
    4. Tap Done to save the new contact.

      Tap Create New ContactFill in the information card for the contact and tap Done when you're done

    Update an Existing Contact

    Is there a chance that this contact's information has changed enough that your iPhone doesn't fully recognize them, but it can tell you may know who's calling or texting you? You'll want to check the contact information for the existing contact and compare it to that of the suggested contact. If you find discrepancies, edit the existing contact using the following steps:

    1. Open the Contacts app.
    2. Scroll down or use the search bar to find the contact that needs to be updated.

      Open the Contacts app
    3. Select the contact when you find them.
    4. Tap Edit in the upper-right corner.

    5. Select the contact information that needs to be updated and enter the new information.
    6. Tap Done to save your changes.


    Check if Your iPhone is Updated

    If you think a contact is being suggested that should already be in your contacts list and you know the contact's information is up to date, try checking that your iPhone's software has been updated to the current version. Software updates often include bug fixes, so these steps may help:

    1. Open the Settings app.
    2. Scroll down and select General.

      Open the Settings appScroll down and select general
    3. Tap on Software Update, and your iPhone will check for updates. If you use an older model iPhone, you may need to verify that the update will work with your phone.
    4. Install the update if one is available.

      Select Software Update

    Lastly, there is no need to fix this feature if you don’t want to. It’s merely another way that your iPhone makes life easier for you. Siri’s help with your contacts poses no security or privacy risk, as the information is gathered only within your iPhone.

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    Author Details

    Erin MacPherson's picture

    Author Details

    Erin MacPherson

    Erin is a Web Editor for iPhone Life and has been a writer, editor, and researcher for many years. She has a degree in communication with an emphasis on psychology and communication, and has spent many of her professional years as a coach in various business and specialty fields. Erin officially joined the ranks of iPhone and Apple users everywhere around nine years ago, and has since enjoyed the unique and customized feel of Apple technology and its many gadgets. When she’s not working, Erin and her son enjoy outdoor adventures, camping, and spending time with their eclectic collection of pets.