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In the proposed Contacts View, you can only see 8 contacts at a time. That might work well for a tablet and look cool if everyone has a picture.
But in reality, only a small # of contacts have pictures. And on my desktop I'd like to see lots of contacts. In Gmail I can see 16+ at a time. Also, I'd like to have a checkbox in front of each contact, like Gmail, so I can select multiple contacts just like I can select multiple messages in my Inbox.
Therefore, can you keep a 'spreadsheet view' where contacts, names, phone numbers, etc. are all lined up? That makes it similar to the Inbox and easy to find who you're looking for -- just scroll through the list. It doesn't look like you can scroll with the proposed view.
And of course I will reiterate the need to add a 'group' pane on the left
so that users can easily categorize contacts into groups just like in Gmail.