Posts Tagged contacts
Our phones have become a significant part of our lives, holding large quantities of our personal data on them. Apps that use our data are also a significant part of them, especially given the rise of free apps and services – if you’re not paying, you’re the product – and what these apps have access to is often quite extensive. While Apple’s walled garden does keep many of those with malicious intent away from the App Store, they’re not perfect. There may just be an app that you trust that is doing something with the data you gave it permission for. Here’s how to manage these privacy settings.
The first and most obvious destination is the Privacy section in Settings. Here, you will see sections for various types of data that apps have requested.
By going to one of these sections, and switching the toggle for that app off, then it will not have access to that data any more. So an app that requests Photos access can have it be restricted. Or, if you initially denied access and wish to grant it, you can now do so from this section.
The Location Services section is particularly worth delving into because not only can the icon appear at random times for no apparent reason, but the section to manage it has many wrinkles that the others do not. One, there are variably-colored location icons next to each service, and they may not be apparent to what they mean until you scroll to the bottom, where iOS explains what each icon means.
What this means is that you can see on this section which apps are currently requesting your location, not just which apps have access to your location. If an app is continually causing the location services icon to appear in the status bar (and potentially draining your battery), you can see which apps are the culprit here. Often times, apps that use location services can have settings disabled from within the app to have their recurring location check disappear, as having loaction access enabled periodically may be key to your usage of the app. As well, the System Services section shows several system functions that use your location, including one for Location-Based iAds that can modify the types of ads you see.
Hopefully these tips have helped you manage your privacy better, and you have a greater understanding of the types of access that iOS apps and system functions have to your data.
Now, there’s one particular advertising-related privacy setting that’s not in Privacy that’s worth considering. Go to Settings→General→About and scroll all the way down to Advertising. Tap on this, and you’ll see a setting for Limit Ad Tracking. By enabling this, then services that identify your device by the Apple Advertising Identifier cannot track you based on this. This means that advertisements will be less targeted to you.
The beauty of individualized ringtones is simple: it’s nice to know who’s calling solely by sound when not looking directly at your phone. But who calls anyone any more that isn’t one’s parents? It’s all texting nowadays. And how about vibration? Well, there is a way to do this, and though it was once only available as an accessibility feature, it’s possible for all users to do this as a system-level feature. While it’s somewhat buried, it is easy to setup.
Go to Contacts. Find the contact you want to set up the custom sound/vibration for, and open up their listing. Now, tap Edit in the top right. This doesn’t just open up the various fields for editing, but it also unlocks the custom sound and vibration settings.
Choosing a ringtone will make that sound play whenever the contact calls. The vibration setting directly below that will be the vibration that goes off when they call. For text tone, this will be the sound that plays when they text, and the vibration setting below this will be the one that goes off when they text.
For vibration, it will be set to the pattern you have set by default, and the other built-in ones can be selected here. To create a custom pattern, scroll down to the Vibration section and choose Create New Vibration.
This will open up a screen where the new vibration pattern can be made. Tap on the screen in various lengths and frequencies in order to create the pattern you want. When finished, tap Stop in the lower right corner to stop recording. Tap Play to play back the pattern, Record to re-record it, and Save in the upper right corner to name and save the pattern.
Saving a vibration pattern makes it available for other contacts, in case you just want a more defined vibration pattern, or want to create vibration patterns for certain groups of people, for example. You can also set a custom vibration pattern as the system default by going to Settings -> Sounds, and then each sound category’s vibration setting can be found by scrolling up.
With Google disabling Exchange ActiveSync support for contacts, a recent guide discussed how to sync contacts up with CardDAV. Well, what if instead you just want to sync up with iCloud instead? Is there any way to do this? Yes! Contacts can be exported to what is known as a VCF file. This includes all basic details like phone numbers, email addresses, and even info like birthdays, so that it’s a relatively pain-free experience to import and export entire lists of contacts. The only major exceptions of data that doesn’t get transferred are contact photos and individual ringtone/vibration settings.
This all happens via your web browser. To export contacts, go to the Google Contacts page. Click the More button, and click Export. Most likely, you’ll want to select the My Contacts group to export, though if you have a specific group you’d like to export, select that, or all contacts. Under “Which export format?” choose vCard format. Save this file and keep note of its location.
Now go to iCloud.com. Log in, and go to Contacts. Click the gear icon in the lower left, and choose Import vCard. Open up the file you just saved from Google, and your contacts will be added to iCloud.
Note that while this specifically covers iCloud and Google Contacts, any service that can import or export VCF files should work. iCloud offers vCard exporting and Google offers vCard importing from the same menus if you want to go in reverse, say if you want to use your contacts on an Android device as well, or if you just want to use something less proprietary.
Now, on your iOS device, make sure that the device you are using has iCloud contacts enabled. Go to Settings → Mail, Contacts, and Calendars, and choose your iCloud account, and switch Contacts to on if necessary, though it is enabled by default. If you haven’t set that iCloud account up on the device, tap Add Account and then tap iCloud to set it up. On the main screen of Mail, Contacts, and Calendars, scroll down to the Contacts heading and tap Default Account. Set your iCloud account as default for new contacts to be added to this account by default.
Now go to the Contacts app. Tap Groups in the upper left corner, and you can customize which contact groups will be shown. Select only All iCloud (or whatever your iCloud account is named as) and un-select any other accounts, and your contacts list will only show your iCloud contacts. You can review them here as well, and when un-hidden, you can link cards to Google contacts or other contact groups as necessary.
Congratulations, you’ve now moved your contacts to iCloud. This process can be reversed – iCloud allows for contact exporting, and Google contact importing from VCF files, and the options are in the same menu locations at each service.
Google has made an announcement that they are shutting down Exchange ActiveSync as a way to access Google email, contacts, and calendars. This has an impact on those who used our earlier guide to get sync Google contacts with iOS, used it for calendar support, or for push email to their devices. While current Exchange connections will still work after the shut down, new ones will be unable to be made. Thankfully, for those who rely on this for contacts, calendars, and email, there are alternatives available.
For calendars, the best replacement solution is to just use the standard Gmail account setup – this uses a protocol called CalDAV to automatically sync calendar events between the device and Google. It should automatically pull in new updates to calendars shortly after they are made elsewhere.
For email, there is no reliable solution at the moment for getting push email in the default Mail app. The Gmail app, which has been recently updated, works very well and has support for multiple accounts and push notifications. Otherwise, consider using an app like Boxcar or Push 4.0 to get push notifications of incoming email.
For contacts, an open protocol named CardDAV can be used to sync Google Contacts up with an iOS device instead. Setting it up is easy. Go to Settings→Mail, Contacts, and Calendars, and choose Add Account…. At the list of services, select Other.
Now choose Add CardDAV Account under the middle Contacts section.
Now at this screen, for the server, enter google.com, for User Name and Password enter your Google Account email address (this works for both regular Google accounts and Google Apps accounts) and for Description, put whatever you want the account to be named as. If all details have been properly entered, then contacts will now sync up with Google.
To use this account as your default account, go back to the main Mail, Contacts, and Calendars screen. Scroll down to the Contacts header. Tap Default Account.
Tap the name of the account you just set up, and any new contacts will be added to this account going forward. Congratulations, your account is now future-proofed against Google’s ActiveSync shutdown.
iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad
Addappt is a new app that wants to help you keep your contacts up to date. It does this by connecting your contact info to anyone you have connected with in the app. So when you update your info, or anyone else does, that contact record gets updated in everyone’s contacts list that they have connected to. It’s a great plan that requires usage of the app, unfortunately.
Contact updates are something that have always been a problem. Let’s hope this will help. Addappt is currently in private beta, but we have invites. Mention 148Apps when you request an invite in app and you’ll get moved to the top of the list.
iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad
Keeping contact records up to date and correct is a near impossible task. TechCrunch has the details on a new app deets that hopes to make that task a little more possible while also including some interesting group communication tools.
This new iOS app is a little bit of everything – it’s a communication hub, a contact synchronization utility and even social networking service. The idea is somewhat similar to the concept of Google+ Circles in the sense that it allows you more control over what info you share and who you share with, but it does so by having you create different personal profiles for each group of contacts. Your “family” group might get your home address and cell number, for example, while your “client” group only sees the office address and phone.
Brewster has less to do with drinking beer than the name suggests. It could make it a heck of a lot easier to arrange meeting up with friends, however.
The app offers a personalized address book experience. Appreciating that everyone is involved with numerous different social networks, Brewster brings everything together to create a personalized and merged view of your contacts.
Working in conjunction with Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Gmail, Foursquare and the iPhone Contacts list, Brewster adds images to every contact, while also providing updates and trends, job changes, house moves, and everything else anyone could ever want from such a consolidated service. It’ll even figure out mutual connections which can uncover some surprising results.
Lists ensure that nothing feels too overwhelming, with a favorites list for extra organization. Throughout the app, everything about Brewster is stylish and intuitive to use.
Brewster is out now and it’s free to download.
Those of us who regularly attend networking events for work, and those who just hang out at plenty of parties will appreciate this dilemma. You meet someone, you want to get to know them better, either for personal or business purposes, but you forget their full name and lose the chance to add them to Facebook. What do you do?
There’s a solution in the form of new app Friendthem. The location-aware app fixes this problem by allowing users to connect on the spot and immediately friend each other on Facebook. There’s no need to look up their name or get the exact spelling correct, the app sorts all that out for the user making it an ideal way to hook up online with the person standing next to you, if you so wish.
It’s not perfect just yet, as the app relies on people to have Friendthem installed, but it is a great step towards making networking much faster and simpler.
It’s free to download, so what have you got to lose in trying it at your next event?
Keeping track of your contacts isn’t as simple as keeping a Rolodex anymore. We have contacts in our phone’s contact app, on LinkedIn, and on various other sites and networks. For those of us with tons of contacts across these platforms, an app like Savi People can be incredibly useful.
Savi People allows users to quickly organize, view, and communicate with their contacts on their phone as well as contacts on social networks (Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter). The app includes grouping and filters as well as some advanced features like batch operations. The app will let users import information from social networks into the contacts on their phones (like pictures, notes, and more). The goal of Savi People is to keep users from constantly hopping between apps to check statuses, send messages, and look up info; now all of that can be done in one app.
Savi People is currently on sale at an introductory price of $0.99. Grab it while it’s cheap!
Released: 2012-06-12 :: Category: Social Networking
For users of Google accounts, iOS provides a built-in way to access mail, calendars, and notes from Google. However, for users looking to get their email pushed to their device, or to synchronize their contacts, this built-in method doesn’t work. But there is a way to do this, though, via Microsoft Exchange on iOS. This will allow for email to be pushed to the device, and for contacts to be synchronized to the iOS device. With iOS 5, it is also possible for notifications to appear in Notification Center, unlike in the official Gmail app, which only plays a notification sound.
This is a better method of contact synchronization with Google than doing it through iTunes. This means that contacts will be directly synchronized to and from Google when they are updated. This is great for those who have an Android device to go along with their iOS devices. This method also only synchronizes the main contacts; iTunes has been known to add all people that have ever been emailed. This method is safer and smarter.
Here’s how to enable this feature on iOS.
Open up Settings. Tap on Mail, Contacts, and Calendars. Tap Add Account. Select Microsoft Exchange.
Enter the email address to be synchronized. The username is the same as the email address, and the password is the password to the account. The description can be anything the user wants. After submitting this information, a new Server option pops up. Enter m.google.com for this field.
If all the info has been successfully submitted, then the ability to enable/disable Mail, Contacts, and Calendar is available.
After all the information synchronizes, contacts from this Google account should appear in the Contacts app. Make sure that for new contacts to sync to the Google servers, set the Default Account in Mail, Accounts, and Calendars to the Exchange account. Multiple Exchange accounts can be synchronized, but only one account can have contacts added to it at a time.
Google does note that there are some drawbacks with Exchange sync versus standard account setup, but these drawbacks are well worth the trade-off for the enhanced feature set.
Contacts Duster is an app that, as the name implies, seeks to clean up those pesky contacts lists. Thanks to various contact synchronization services and user error, sometimes contact lists just aren’t as clean as they need to be. I think I’m in my contacts list three times. Contacts Duster can easily find those disparate contacts profiles, and merge them together with one tap. As well, it can eliminate so-called zombie contacts, which the app classifies as emails not attached to any actual contacts. Contacts can be shared as VCF files and deleted in batches, although to share/delete more than 10 at a time, Auto Dust needs to be purchased in the app for $1.99, which also removes the ads from the app. Contacts Duster uses iCloud to save the purchase of Auto Dust across devices. This all syncs up with the built-in iOS Contacts list, which will sync to any services of the user’s choice. Considering how convoluted contacts lists can get, this universal app provides a useful service for those looking to clean up their contacts list, and is free to try out.
Released: 2010-08-11 :: Category: Utilities
Back in the early nineties, nobody would have understood the meaning of “Googling” something, but Google is now one of the most powerful companies on the web. The team at INYFX, Inc hopes that Whoodl will follow the same path. While not a search engine, this app does return fast results – the names of people you’ve forgotten. You know the scenario, someone spots you across the room, waves and begins making their way over to you. You smile back, attempting to stay calm as the icy realization that you’ve forgotten their name hits. So what do you do? Hope that a simple “Hello, how are you?” suffices? Maybe, but what if you have to introduce them to someone else who joins you? The first thing you need to do is to PAY ATTENTION next time you meet someone. If that doesn’t work, download Whoodl.
Whoodl is a very simple app that allows you to quickly tap in a name along with certain keywords and save them for quick access later. Dave you met at the golf course goes in as Dave Shore with the tag “golf”. Next time you see him out of context at the supermarket and struggle for his name, type golf into Whoodl and you’ll have your name in a matter of seconds. The company claims the app is far faster than the iPhone’s address book and that it’s designed for those names you wouldn’t necessarily add to your Contacts anyway.
We do worry that adding multiple names to a single tag could lead you to calling someone by the wrong name entirely, but this is nevertheless an interesting app that could help you out of some very sticky social situations.
In a couple of the cases I was genuinely surprised how well the software worked. Text that I could barely make out was interpreted perfectly. Conversely, perfectly legible text in standard fonts was not transferred at all.
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Although its user interface is a bit quirky, ABContacts continues to evolve. The current version works well and provides a relatively streamlined experience. It provides far more functionality than the Contacts app built into the iPhone, and is definitely worth considering.
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