Mike (yincrash) wrote,

How to export your T-Mobile Contacts to Google Contacts

UPDATE (8/1/2009) : It appears that T-Mobile released a contacts sync app! http://apps.t-mobile.com/ I haven't tried it, but it probably nicely solves the problem that this post solved a year ago.

UPDATE (6/25/2009) : Changed instructions and code to a bookmarklet! Much easier and doesn't require firefox! keywords: T-Mobile, google, mytouch 3g, g1, android, contacts, export, import, phone, address book

UPDATE (3/30/2009) : T-Mobile has made a couple of changes which caused this script to break. As of today, I updated the script on this page to work properly. Please let me know if it breaks again. I don't think they are purposely breaking, they just implement new things in the javascript w/o telling me.

So, last week, I received my new T-Mobile G1 (previously known as the HTC Dream) which runs on the new fangled Google Android mobile platform. FANCY.

I'm really enjoying playing with it. I'm currently working on making stuff for it.

However, there is one thing I needed sooner rather than later. All my contacts from my old phone.
T-Mobile has a fancy service that syncs all your phone contacts to a T-Mobile server. It lets you manage your contacts on their website, and I imagine one of the original intentions as well was to make switching to a new phone easier. However, the T-Mobile G1 currently has no such feature to sync with your T-Mobile address book. I imagine this is mainly because it syncs with your Google Contacts (yeah, that you use in your gmail and maybe gtalk, but very few other places). This is fine and nice and dandy except I still want all my old phone numbers.

I'm hoping that eventually T-Mobile will release an App that can do the syncing in a clean and proper faction, but until then, I found a javascript hack that someone put together to export the address book from the T-Mobile website address book page. He created it to help a friend who bought an iPhone bring her old address book to her new friend. However, while what he did fairly clear to a web developer, it's not easy to implement for everyone.

So, I tried to make a webpage to do the work for you. Basically, I wanted to rip the data out of the webpage from another webpage. This used to be possible. However, now it isn't. Browsers have implemented permissions to prevent this sort of thing when the pages are from two different domains because it can be used to steal passwords or other sensitive data. Maybe it's still possible to create a web based tool by making the tool's server as a proxy or something, but that means placing a lot more trust in the web tool to not record or divulge your password and such. Also, it would require more work. I got what I needed to get.

At the very least, I changed his code to export to Google's CSV contact format. Just using what his code created did not play that well with Google Contacts. It jammed almost everything into the "Notes" section. I also wrapped the output in a <textarea> tag to make it much easier to copy and paste.

How to export your T-Mobile Contacts to Google Contacts
What You Need: 
  • A webbrowser (this method was tested with firefox and google chrome, but it should work with all major browsers)
  • T-Mobile Contacts
This only exports the following fields,
  • Name
  • Home Mobile Phone
  • Home Phone 
  • Home Email
  • Work Mobile Phone
  • Work Phone
If you need more than these fields, you need to edit the code. You can try asking me for more fields mappings.
What to Do:
  1. Browse http://my.t-mobile.com/ to get to the Contacts page. As of this writing, the page title says T-Mobile MobileLife(SM). You should be able to see all your contacts and do stuff to them.
  2. Add a bookmark to your browser, the name/title can be anything, like "Export Contacts from T-mobile". Copy the following code and paste it in to the URL field
  3. Save the bookmark.
  4. While viewing the T-Mobile Contacts page, click on the bookmark.
  5. A text box should appear. Some browsers say the page is still loading, but really it is not. The text box contains all of the exported data. Select All of this text (Control+A) then copy it to a text file and name it "contacts.csv" or something like that. 
  6. Go to GMail.
  7. Go to Contacts
  8. Select All your contacts and export them. You want to back up your contacts, so you have a clean copy. Importing contacts in Google can result in duplicates. It does have some duplicate checking, but I'm not sure how good it is.
  9. Import your "contacts.csv" file that you created.
  10. Make crazy phone calls from your new phone.


  • deprecation

    I suppose I'm deprecating this journal. It currently doesn't have a replacement. Occasionally I'll post facebook notes, I suppose.

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  • deprecation

    I suppose I'm deprecating this journal. It currently doesn't have a replacement. Occasionally I'll post facebook notes, I suppose.