Browsing & searching contacts

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Users can browse an alphabetical list in the Contacts view and navigate to details about each contact – or use the Search control to find someone.

Other views that show contacts include Favorites (after the user has added favorites) and Recents (once the user has a call history). Users can start a search or place a call from any of these views, or from the Dialpad view.


Browsing the Contacts list

Users can scroll vertically through the top-level Contacts list to browse their contacts, which are imported from their phones. Favorites and preferred phone numbers are not imported; users specify these within Dialer.

Scrolling through the contacts list
As users scroll through a list of contacts, the app bar (or app header) at the top of the screen remains fixed in place, and the contact list scrolls behind it

Each list item displays information about the contact and allows for two possible actions: calling the contact or viewing contact details.

Contact list item anatomy
Elements in each list item:
1. Name of contact
2. Avatar
3. Contact’s preferred phone number type
4. Contact details icon

Users can select any of the first three elements (or the area near them) to place a call to a contact’s preferred number, or they can select the contact detail icon to navigate to a more detailed view of the contact.


When users browse the Contacts view, they can select a contact detail icon to see a more detailed view of a contact.

Navigating to contact details
Selecting the details icon to the right of the contact name opens the detail view
Navigating away from contact details
The detail view shows the contact’s phone numbers and address (if known)

In the detail view, users can:

  • Place a call
  • Add a favorite
  • View the route to the contact’s address in Google Maps (by selecting the address)
  • Navigate to a contact’s address (by selecting the navigation icon)
  • Return to the top-level list of contacts (by using the back arrow)

Car makers can decide whether to use Google Maps or their own navigation system to navigate to a contact’s address.


Searching for contacts

Another way users can find a specific contact, whether or not they are in the Contacts view, is to select the Search control (magnifying glass icon) on the app bar.

Search overlay screen
Selecting the Search control brings up a search overlay containing a keyboard, a search bar, and a back button

How the user can specify search criteria depends on whether the car is parked or moving:

  • When parked: Users enter search criteria on the keyboard touch screen
  • When moving: Users must enter search criteria using speech-to-text

As the user enters search criteria, the search string appears in the search bar. Dialer uses the search criteria to filter the contact list in real time as the user types. It displays only those contacts that continue to match the user’s search criteria.

When the user finds and selects a contact, Dialer displays the contact detail view. There, the user can select from the contact’s available numbers to place a call.