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Google Contacts for Android adds Highlights tab.

Google Contacts for Android adds Highlights tab.

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Except for new iconGoogle Contacts has undergone quite a few changes over the past year, the latest being a new Highlights section.

Accents appears between Contacts and Edit & Manage in the Material You bottom bar. Below the search box, you get a grid of Favorites that fits four icons in a row. It’s denser than the Phone app’s Favorites tab, and you can quickly “add” new ones from the top right corner.

The grid coexists with the favorites list at the top of the main tab. As such, there are now two ways to view.

This is followed by Recent, which is a two-tab list that starts with Recently Viewed. Each contact is accompanied by a review date, and the overflow menu allows you to clear this history. “Recently Added” completes the list and is the most useful part of this new user interface.

With this change which released recently, Google Contacts is now a three-tab app that also includes a navigation drawer in the main list view. The app is getting a little busy.

Fix and manage” to highlight various tools the app offers was a nice addition, but it’s not clear that it warrants a whole-tab approach. If nothing else, the new contact network should just be added to the top of the main list and replace the favorites list, while the Recents section can go into the existing Manage section.

That said, in theory, this new Highlights tab could be the primary way people use Google Contacts. Instead of scrolling, they can simply search, while the web is more visual and list-friendly.

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