For many, their contacts still remain as one of the areas that could use some improvement, especially since most of us have them spread around different services and networks, like your email address book, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and so on.
Now, with Brewster, that’s a problem that will certainly be solved for some of us. The idea behind Brewster is simple yet what it accomplishes is something really useful: The service aims to be an all-in-one contacts app that hooks into several applications and pulls information from your contacts from them, keeping it updated at all times across your iOS devices and your Mac.
It also works on Android but in this post we will only see how to use it on iOS and Mac. The steps should be similar for Android devices, so don’t leave just yet if you’re an Android user.
Let’s take a more detailed look at how Brewster works and how you could use it to merge contacts from various social networks, iOS and Mac.
Setting Up Brewster
Before you start using Brewster on your Mac or iOS devices, you’ll have to allow the app access to all the contacts on your iPhone (which should be linked to iCloud).
Then, you’ll also have to grant Brewster access to the different services where you have your contacts stored and that are supported by the app, like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Yahoo, just to name a few of them.
Note: In the case of Gmail, Brewster supports multiple Gmail accounts, which is definitely convenient.
One pretty significant downside (at least for some) that I found about Brewster is that the service requires you to sign up using your Facebook account. This is pretty convenient of course, but if you want to keep, say, your personal contacts separated from your professional ones, then this mandatory social network integration can be a deal breaker.
Once you allow Brewster access to all the services you want to integrate contacts from, the app takes some time to pull all their information and then it shows you all your contacts in a fancy grid view with their pictures.
Cool, Useful Features
While the core aspect of Brewster works as advertised, there are a few nice, additional features that make the app more convenient than it already is.
For example, a simple tap lets you tag contacts for different purposes, making it a lot easier to filter them out later on.
The search feature is also far more thorough than on any other contacts app I’ve tried before, searching even for information that in most cases is not available on simple contact entries. For example, searching for a city usually should not yield any results when searching among my contacts, but thanks to Brewster’s integration with other services, searching for that city brings a few results of people that currently live in it. Even more, since contact information is kept up to date, if anyone of my contacts were to move to this city, the search results would also include them.
In similar fashion, the mosaic of pictures from your contacts is not there just for decoration. Whenever something important comes up with any of your contacts (like their birthday for example) the picture of that contact will be displayed larger than the rest.
Important Note: Brewster is pretty good merging contact information, but if you get duplicate contacts, you have to un-merge them manually by tapping the Edit button.
And there you have it. If you can get past the mandatory social network integration and are looking for a pretty seamless and convenient way to have all your contacts in one place, then your should definitely give Brewster a try