People App in Windows 8 – Share, Access Contacts, Address Book, Status Updates

Managing contacts has always been a tough task, owing to the increase in the number of devices used to store and access them – and the increase in the number of online friends. You do not get an easy single source via which you can get complete access to all the stored contacts. The People app in Windows 8 brings together email contacts and contacts from your service and social accounts in one, easy to access and use, place that you can sync across all your Windows 8 PCs.

You will agree when I say that, email, texting, phone calls, social updates and comments have become an inseparable part of our daily activity that we do on the phones PC and tablet. All these activities can now be ably carried out with the new ‘contact experience’: The People App in Windows 8.

People App in Windows 8

The People App connects you to your email and social accounts, bringing together all your contacts and their updates, in one convenient place. The app uses Exchange ActiveSync and the secure, standards-based APIs like OAuth, REST, etc. to access Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, in order to sync a copy of your contact list from the cloud.

To start using the People App, you will have to first add an account. You can add Facebook, Hotmail, LinkedIn, Google, Twitter and Outlook accounts.

You will then have to give the app, access to your Facebook, Twitter, etc, accounts.

Once all the contacts and other information have been synchronized, the app will give you a beautifully tailored experience where you can see and comment on their social activities and photos, view their contact details, or send them a message via whatever service you and that contact have in common.

If you look at a single contact, you can get all their contact information and what they’re up to.

If you tap “What’s new”, you will get an at-a-glance summary from your social networks.

You can share your latest favorite article with your friends and followers just by connecting your accounts to the People app. It supports the Share contact feature which allows you to post to Facebook or Twitter from any Windows 8 app.

Even when someone comments on the photos you just uploaded, the People app tile (and the “Me” Notifications tab in the app itself) animates with that update and encourages you to check it. Likewise, every time there is some activity done by one of your pinned contacts, it is instantly reflected on the tile.

Lastly, there is one more feature – the People Picker contract. With this, any Windows 8 app can speed up simple tasks like sending a package from a website or emailing a list of friends by letting you quickly select contacts from the People app.

The challenge however lies in handling the duplicates. What if the same person who is a friend with you on Facebook, is also a colleague on LinkedIn and you also follow him on Twitter? Under such circumstances, wouldn’t the app in an attempt to get the info from a given person from his multiple accounts mess up data from all the sources? Not at all!

The People app – just like Windows Phone and Hotmail – automatically detects that all of these contacts are of the same person, and presents them to you as a single “linked” contact with all the data together in one place and on one tile.

The People App remembers your connection to services such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, no matter what Windows 8 device you sign in from. Go here to learn how to link or unlink contacts in the People App.

Source: MSDN Blogs.

Have you checked out the cool Fresh Paint for Windows 8 app?

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Anand Khanse is the Admin of TheWindowsClub.com, a 10-year Microsoft MVP Awardee in Windows (2006-16) & a Windows Insider MVP. Please read the entire post & the comments first, create a System Restore Point before making any changes to your system & be careful about any 3rd-party offers while installing freeware.