The Joys of Contact Groups in Your Android Phone - dummies

The Joys of Contact Groups in Your Android Phone

By Dan Gookin

It’s possible to corral contacts from your Android phone’s address book app into groups. The purpose of these groups is to make contacting everyone in the group easier. Not only that, groups can help you locate related contacts — family, coworkers, emotional enablers — quicker when your phone’s address book is overly crammed with people.

The method for creating a contact group is subtly different, which makes sense given the variations of the different Android phone address book apps. Generally speaking, here’s how it works:

  1. Open the phone’s address book app.

    The stock Android name for the address book app is People, although on many phones the app is named Contacts.

  2. Touch the Groups tab.

    The tab may be titled Groups or use a Groups icon.

    The Groups tab lists any existing groups, such as those associated with your Gmail account.

  3. Add a group.

    If you see the New Group or Add icon, touch it. Otherwise, touch the Action Overflow or Menu icon and choose the Create command.

  4. Choose an account for the group.

    I recommend choosing your Google account. If you primarily use another account listed on the screen, choose it instead.

    You want to associate the group with a specific account. That helps synchronize the group with the Internet and other devices that have access to the same account.

  5. Type the group’s name.

    Think up something short and descriptive.

  6. Add people to the group.

    At this point, the methods change depending on how the phone implements the address book app. You type the names of contacts to add to the group or select them from a list. Either way, populate the group with contacts whom you want to treat as a group.

  7. Touch the Done or Save button when you’ve finished creating the group.

People can be added or removed from groups at any time. First choose the group in the address book app, and then touch the Edit icon or choose the Edit command from the Action Overflow menu.

To delete a group, choose the Delete command from the Action Overflow menu. You may have to first choose the group to display it on the screen. Touch the OK button to remove the group. Removing a group doesn’t remove its individual members from the phone’s address book.

On some phones, a group is deleted by long-pressing its name. Choose the Delete command from the menu that pops up.

  • Working with the group is generally done in a specific app, such as the Gmail or Email app, or whichever text messaging app your phone uses. Or you might find group commands on the Groups screen.

  • Contacts you place into the group are marooned there. You can always access an individual contact’s information in the phone’s address book no matter to which groups they’ve been assigned.

  • It’s entirely possible to have a single contact in several groups.