I recently purchased a Droid Incredible, and linked it to my Google account. Now the list of contacts to choose from when creating a new message is huge (click the "contact" icon next to the To field of the message, which seems to be the same as the "search people" app).

It appears to be including every contact from every aspect of my Google account, mixed in with everything on my phone: every email I've ever contacted, plus everyone on my GTalk contact list, plus everyone in my phone contacts.

Is there any way to cut this list down? In its present state, the list itself is useless (forcing me to rely on typing the name in). Ideally I'd like to see only a specific group by default. Also acceptable would be limiting it to only phone contacts, or only contacts in my Gmail My Contacts list.

Update: It seems that this feature is available in the default Android contacts app (the sync groups setting supposedly allows you to only synchronize contacts from specific groups), but not the HTC Incredible's version of Sense (http://www.google.com/support/forum/p/Google+Mobile/thread?tid=0ff2b08f98943ccb&hl=en).

Is there a simple way to get back to the stock contacts app? Or a solid replacement that includes the sync groups feature?

3 Answers 3


This answer may help if you don't mind sending messages via the Contact app. I was able to go to my Contacts app, hit the Settings button, then go to More -> Display options and check Only contacts with phone. From Contacts you can still search, and you can still access your recent contacts.

  • Thanks, Chance. I've actually seen that setting already (see my comment on Daniel's answer)... Unfortunately there are a few instances where that doesn't help. The main example that gives me issues being cases where I need to send a text to multiple recipients.
    – AceCalhoon
    Commented Mar 18, 2011 at 22:19
  • yeah, you're right. It's only good for sending messages to one person.
    – Chance
    Commented Mar 18, 2011 at 22:35

It may depend on what phone you are using. For the HTC Evo (and most likely any other HTC phone with Sense) it seems you can't change the the list in "Search People" but you can change the list in your "People" app. If this is what you want to do open the "People" app and you'll see all your contacts. The open the menu and select "View" - here you can change some of the contacts that will be viewed in your "People" app.

I tried changing my contacts list this way and then checked if the "People Search" app would also remove the same contacts but it would seem it doesn't work that way. For example I added and removed Twitter contacts but either way they still appeared in the "Peaople Search" list.

Hope this helps

  • Mine is the HTC Incredible (for now, at least) and seems to behave the way you describe. I was hoping I was just missing something :/
    – AceCalhoon
    Commented Feb 16, 2011 at 17:43
  • 1
    @AceCalhoon One thing I do is used Gmail's Contact Groups and group some of my contacts in that way (Family, Work, etc.) then when you in the "People" app you can slide to the "Groups" section and have a smaller set of contacts to view - not sure if this will actually help with what you want but it may be helpful to someone. You can also add a contact to a group directly from Android but doing this in Gmail should be faster.
    – Daniel
    Commented Feb 16, 2011 at 18:03
  • @Daniel Thanks, I saw that one... You can also set the People app to only show contacts with phone numbers via the menu hardware button. Unfortunately those settings don't seem to apply to the search people app :(
    – AceCalhoon
    Commented Feb 16, 2011 at 18:07
  • @AceCalhoon Bummer - sorry I don't have a better answer. Good luck though
    – Daniel
    Commented Feb 16, 2011 at 21:11
  • @AceC I have noticed that HTC's customized apps have a bug where they show you all messaging types for all contacts from every app, where the built-in apps (on a non-HTC phone) only show you the relevant contact types. Eg in the EMail app you're only shown email addresses from contacts who have them, and from the Messaging app you're only shown phone numbers from contacts who have them. While on other people's HTC phones I've seen them go into the text message app to send a message and they're offered all contact details for all contacts, which is crazy.
    – GAThrawn
    Commented Apr 18, 2011 at 13:38

If you're creating a new message it might be easier to just go into the Contacts/People app, set up your desired filtering there (as others have already pointed out).

Then instead of going into the Messaging/Email/GMail app to send your message stay in the Contacts/People app, find the person you want to send the message to and just press on the relevant contact detail (eg phone number or email address) to send to them. This should give you a much more manageable list.

  • Unfortunately there are a few instances where that doesn't help. The main example that gives me issues being cases where I need to send a text to multiple recipients.
    – AceCalhoon
    Commented Apr 18, 2011 at 13:10

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