There are many changes coming to phones and mobile devices when Windows 10 finally launches, and thanks to some of the Build sessions, we got to learn a bit more. For example, Microsoft is planning to introduce some important changes to the People Hub and the way contacts work on its platform.
The integration between different services and the phone’s contact list has always been an important part of the Windows Phone functionality, but it looks like with the launch of Windows 10 Microsoft wants to emphasize this even more.
Besides some of the big UI and UX changes coming to the People app itself, there are also important changes on the backend as well. Developers will now be able to further integrate, query and use a device’s contact list an give users new functionality or easier access to their services. Not only that, but services will also show up throughout the OS along first party options.
A good example of these new capabilities was shown off with the integration of Xbox contacts in the People Hub. A long overdue feature; this new capability will allow users to find their friends faster, contact and connect with them directly via the People app, and have more of their services easily accessible. But there’s even more, as apps would also be able to query this data and use it. For example, an Xbox Live enabled game could simply query the contacts list and send invites to your friends via SMS.
Developers will be able to similarly make use of other services, or simply integrate their own social networks, contacts, or other features directly into the device’s contacts app. Of course, extra privacy controls – such as the ability to disable such access on an app-by-app or global basis – will also be coming alongside the new functionality.
Finally, it’s worth mentioning that not all of this functionality may be available when Windows 10 launches. Some of these APIs and capabilities were already present in Windows Phone 8.1, some are brand new while others are still being developed as we speak. As such, expect further refinements and features to show up in the months ahead.