Managing Contacts On Android
Last Updated: June 28, 2013
On a tablet the contacts App is used to manage email contacts.
You should be aware that some tablets may not have a contact App pre-installed and so you will need to install one from the Google Play store.
The true contact app is a Google contact look a like based on the original Google contact App and is the one I installed on my old tablet.
You should note that you don’t need to use a contacts App to send email if you are using an online email account with Gmail,Yahoo Mail etc as the contacts are available from your online contacts.
Contact Apps are usually able to sync contacts between the tablet/phone and an online account.
By having a contact App you can create contacts on your tablet rather than having to login to your online email account to create them.
Using the Google Contacts App
You can access your Android Contacts by tapping the contacts App (Older versions was called People).
The contacts App combines the contacts from various online services like Gmail, Skype etc into a single contact list.
The screen shot below shows the main screen layout
To scroll down a long list of contacts use the gray vertical bar on the right of the screen.
You can search for a contact using the search button.
You should also note that the contact icons use different colours for contacts, but they seem to be randomly assigned.
If you click the overflow button then you get the following configuration options.
The contacts to display lets you add/remove the display of various accounts from the main display. All contacts is the default.
To only display the contacts from Yahoo then select the radio button next to the Yahoo account.
You can use the customise option to select contacts from multiple accounts.
Import/Export allows you to import contacts from a vcards. You can only import into a Google account.
The share visible option allows you to send the contacts via email, bluetooth etc rather than storing them on your hardrive.
This lets you add and remove accounts from the contacts list. Removing accounts remove them from your device and not just from your contacts
This allows you to sort the contacts by first name (default) or last name (sort by).
The name format option allows you display them using first name first or last name first.
The main screen display has two main tabs favourites and ALL contacts.
You can use the favourites for contacts that you use the most. To add a contact to your favourites you need to open the contact to edit.
Contacts are usually created in Gmail/Skype and are synchronised with the contact list on your tablet/phone.
This synchronisation works very well for Gmail accounts but seems less robust on Skype.
I haven’t used other applications like Microsoft exchange so I’m not sure how well it works there.
Here is an old video that shows how to manage contacts and how they sync or don’t sync is some case with Gmail and Skype accounts.
In the video I use two Gmail accounts one of which needed to be designated as the primary.
Both way synchronisation works well with both accounts. (video implies only one way).
This means that you can edit the contacts either in the contact list on the Tablet or from the Gmail account on the Web.
However if you create a new contact on the tablet it is synchronised to the primary account only.
I would always recommend that you manage contacts in the original application, and let them sync back to your tablet/phone.
Moving Contacts Between Devices
If you have multiple android devices e.g a tablet and phone then there is no need to move contacts between the devices provided they both use the same Google account and the Google account will store the contacts and make them available across devices.
Related Articles and Resources:
- Google and Other Android Accounts
- Using Android share
- Setting up and using email
- Five Alternative Contact Apps