11/16/12

People Hub improvements on Windows Phone 8

The People Hub in your Nokia Lumia is the go-to place to find all the details of everybody you know. The details of which are constantly updated as your friends or family update their lives online, via social networks. Now, People Hub on your Nokia Lumia 920 and Lumia 820(Windows Phone 8) adds some new features to allow you to connect even more with those people.
If you weren’t already aware, your People Hub (contact list) is mostly compiled by the accounts you set up on your phone. If you’ve added your Facebook account in the phone settings, you’ll find your Facebook friends in your People Hub; the same can be said for LinkedIn, Twitter, Outlook, Hotmail, Messenger, Google and other compatible accounts. This enables you to be only a few clicks away from anybody and everybody that matters in your life.
We’ve gone into detail about People Hub before, so feel free to check that out for all the ins-and-outs of what already happens with People Hub.
Together panel Rooms
As for the new additions to People Hub in Windows Phone 8, one new feature is the together panel in the People Hub. This together panel is where you’ll now find Groups and Rooms.
While Groups themselves are nothing new, they are a simple way of gathering people into categories for the simple purpose of contacting a group of people in one go. The Groups feature can now be synced with your Microsoft account, which means that you’ll see the exact same groups of people listed in your People section on Hotmail or Outlook.com.
As for Rooms, well, they’re kind of an improved version of Groups. Rooms are places where you can invite people to, share photos, videos, OneNote notes, your location and all share a common calendar.
If you’re the Room creator, only you will be able to invite other members to join your private chats – or remove people from them, if necessary. It’s definitely worth remembering that when you post anything in the room, it’ll be seen by everybody in that room. So, if you want to make things even more private, stick to regular SMS, email or a one-to-one phone call.
Group What's new
You can create as many Rooms as you like, and each Room will have it’s own settings. The calendar you create for one room won’t get mixed up with another, but can all be shared and edited by all members. This shared calendar is perfect for families looking to keep organised at the weekends, colleagues trying to share their work schedule or friends wanting to organise a night out.
Don’t fret if you’ve not yet got a Windows Phone 8 smartphone, you can still (partly) be included in a Room of somebody that does. The shared calendar feature works with iOS and Windows Phone 7.5 devices. If somebody sends you an invite, you’ll receive a link to a webpage where you’ll be guided on how to set up your devices calendar for sharing.
While sending messages to all your friends in this little private chat room is a great way of keeping everybody in-the-loop if you’re making plans, the automatic syncing of OneNote notes with Room members lets you add more detail if you wish.
A nice touch is also the ability to change the background image – think of it like wallpaper – of the Room. If you want to change it, you can, but everybody else will see it too. This allows you to keep the Room looking fresh and can also lead funny quips, depending on the image you’ve selected.
The already great People Hub just got more personal and much improved.

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