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Google Contacts gets fresh design, better tool for dealing with duplicates

The Contacts pages that coexists with Gmail is getting a new, cleaner design that makes it easier to communicate with your friends and family.

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Screenshot by Sarah Mitroff/CNET

Google is cleaning up your contacts. Today, the company teased out a preview of its new and improved Contacts page, where you view and manage the people, phone numbers and email addresses in your Google account. It looks a whole lot cleaner and promises to help make getting rid of duplicate entries easier.

The new page looks a lot like Google Drive on the Web, which Google has spent the last year overhauling with an updated aesthetic. It's clean, colorful and much easier on the eyes than before, with a bright blue header and light-gray background.

Instead seeing an overwhelming list of contacts, the new page is divided into sections; starred contacts, frequently contacted people and everyone else. Groups, Circles and other tabs are neatly housed in a sidebar on the left side. The import and export tools, and other settings are hidden in the More tab in the sidebar, instead of sitting at the top like they used to.

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Google

Google completely rebuilt the tool that merges duplicate contacts to streamline the process. With the tool, you'll clearly see each duplicate entry in your address book, including the name and contact information, so you can decide if you want to merge it or not.

For your contacts who use Google+, their information will automatically update if they make any changes, such as adding a new phone number or changing their job title. Also, when you open an individual contact, you'll see recent emails you've sent to each other and any shared Google Calendar events.

If you have a personal Google account, you can check out the new Contacts page now at contacts.google.com/preview. Tough luck if you have a Google Apps account however -- you'll have to wait a bit longer for the preview.