LinkedIn has announced it is launching a new Linkedin Contacts that aims to create a “personal assistant” for users.
You might be thinking you already have a Contacts section in your LinkedIn account – and you’d be right. However, this goes well beyond what LinkedIn offers today under the “Contacts” tab. The new LinkedIn Contacts will reside within LinkedIn and also as a standalone app for iPhone.
What’s new about it? With the new LinkedIn Contacts you will be able to see information not only about your LinkedIn connections, but also everybody in your address book, calendars and emails. You can have all your professional contacts in one place, instead of scattered around among LinkedIn, email, and other places.
On the official LinkedIn blog, Engineer and Product Specialist Sachin Rekhi writes:
“LinkedIn Contacts brings together all your address books, emails, and calendars, and keeps them up to date in one place. From these sources, we’ll automatically pull in the details of your past conversations and meetings, and bring these details directly onto your contact’s profile.”
You also will be able to add notes (such as how you first met the person), set reminders about your contacts, and be notified of birthdays, Rekhi writes.
You can also see your last communication with the person. You’ll be able to sort your contacts based on your most recent interactions with them, upcoming meetings or other criteria.
A TechCrunch.com report on the new feature looks at compatibility with other websites and services. Users can collect and organize contact data from the following: Gmail, Google Contacts, Google Calendar; Google Apps Mail, Contacts and Calendar; Yahoo! Mail, Contacts and Calendar; Outlook Mail, Contacts and Calendar; iPhone Address Book (via the LinkedIn Contacts app); LinkedIn’s CardMunch service; Evernote and TripIt.
Not only will LinkedIn Contacts collect information from all of these sources, but the information automatically updates when it changes on the underlying platform.
You will not be able to import your Twitter or Facebook contacts. LinkedIn currently plans to focus on professional contacts (not social ones).
TechCrunch also reports that LinkedIn Contacts is the first major development out of its acquisition of the contact management platform Connected in October 2011.
The new LinkedIn Contacts has a waiting list that you can ask to be added to. It will roll out in stages over the next several months to LinkedIn’s 155 million monthly users.
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