Some people find the new Outlook contact card difficult to use. They prefer the full card with room to add attachments and notes. Don’t fret – you can still get to the full contact card easily.

The new Outlook contact card has two main purposes:

  • It brings together contact information from multiple sources
  • It gives quick access to the most frequently used contact information and different communication methods.

Multiple sources

Your first contact with someone may have been through a Social Network like LinkedIn, Facebook, SharePoint Social or an IM using Lync. If you add your Social Network Connections into Outlook, your contacts from those networks will be stored in Outlook’s People(Contacts) folder. You’ll find a sub-folder for each of the social networks and a folder for Lync contacts.

Open the full Outlook contact card from the new contact card

The contact card is a unified view of your contacts information from these different services.

In the View Source section of the contact card, the different sources for the contact information are listed as hyperlinks. Use a hyperlink to open the full contact card to edit all details, notes and attachments.


Create a new Outlook contact from the new contact card

Save a contact from your Social Network or Lync by editing the contact card and adding details such as a telephone number or second email address. This will create a full Outlook contact card, where you can add notes or attachments if you wish.

This is an example of a Lync contact. I have held an IM conversation with this person. Outlook has saved a contact into the folder “Lync Contacts”. I will edit the contact and add a phone number. This will save the contact as an Outlook contact, with the full Outlook contact card.
The Work phone number is added and saved.
Now there is a new source for contact information, an Outlook contact card. I can open it by clicking on the link/URL for the source.

Quick Access

The new contact card gives quick access to the most frequently used contact information and communication methods. There are a number of places where you can hover your mouse over your contacts name and the contact card will appear. In Outlook, SharePoint, CRM, Office documents and Lync communications. Start an email, instant message, Lync voice or video call directly from the contact card. Schedule a meeting or see your contacts latest updates from their Social Networks.

If Lync is your phone system at work, you’ll be able to make a phone call to the phone numbers listed on the new contact card. Quick access means getting in contact faster, from the context of an email, document, CRM or SharePoint.

The new contact card is an improvement on storing multiple Outlook contact cards. It’s true that there’s an extra click to open the full Outlook contact card. But the new contact card is available in more places, giving quick access to multiple sources of contact information.

FAQ’s and Responses

Copying details from the new contact card

Sunny Lowe asked a good question on LinkedIn. He has trouble with the new Outlook contact card when he wants to simply copy an address and paste it into an email to share with others.


This is the method I’d use to copy details from the contact card, such as an email address or phone number.

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