Last reviewed on January 11, 2013   —  8 Comments

Outlook 2013's Contacts have a new default view called People and new Contact Cards. I think the People view is confusing and contact cards make using contacts more complicated. They are definitely not my favorite new features, and based on the number of questions I receive, the People view and Contact cards are a source of confusion for many users.

"I cannot change the contact photo while editing."

The contact photo can't be changed from the Contact card. Switch to the View ribbon and apply a different view. Open the familiar contact form to access the Picture button on the Home ribbon, Options chunk. (Or double click on the photo to select a new one.)
You can also open the contact form from the new Contact card, if it has links under View Source. When the card is in Edit mode, the entries under View source are not clickable - click Cancel to exit Edit mode.

"I cannot find the attachment I just added to a contact."

The new contact cards don't display the attachments. To access attachments added to contacts you'll need to switch to another view and locate the contact or click the link under View Source to open the contact form.

Share your opinion in our poll: Do you like the People view and contact cards?
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  1. Roger Brooks says

    I hate the new contact cards and find their behaviour unpredictable. When I am in Outlook, I want to see the information I have stored in Outlook, not LinkedIn or any other social networks. In previous versions of Outlook, I could type a name into the contact search field in the upper left and open the desired contact with one click in the resulting list. Now I don't know what I will get form this list. Occasionally, if I am lucky, it will open a n Outlook contact for me (what I want). More often it will display a contact card, which sometimes has a link that I can click through to reach the Outlook contact. Sometimes, it just displays an e-mail address properties dialog, from which there is no way to reach the Outlook contact, even though a corresponding Outlook contact exists. As a result, I have resorted to other methods of searching for and opening contacts, but all are far more cumbersome than the previous method described, and require me to go through the link in the contact card. Is there some magical registry entry I can hack to restore the previous functionality and ban the contact cards?

  2. Kirk Belmont says

    Why do some of my Outlook Contacts pictures turn blank over time. I'll explain...I create a contact...add a picture...then after a week or two...I open the contact back up and the picture is blank...not empty...just blank...and the picture is still attached because when I left click it say do you want to delete or change picture...if I delete and re add the still shows blank...If I create new contact and use the same picture it displays without a problem. Have seen this across multiple file types...jpeg...bmp...etc.

  3. paulinaf says

    How can I change view in the People/Contacts to show the name & phone# only like it used to be in the old version of Outlook, rather than the entire contents of the card?

  4. Charles says

    Why can't I add e-mail addresses to contacts directly when in list view? I can add any other information, but once I get to the e-mail I just get dings when I type and nothing is entered. I have to enter the e-mail through the contact card after double clicking on the name.

    • Diane PoremskyDiane Poremsky says

      AFAIK, it's not editable because you can set formatting properties on the address (always use plain text, let outlook decide) - it was a lot easier to set that in old versions of Outlook (so you'll probably never see that dialog in 2013/2016).

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