Is there a link by which I can open the old Google Contact Manager (the one with 3 columns layout)? It allowed instant search and the ability to view contact details on the same page.

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At the bottom of the screen is a link to "older version", which points to https://www.google.com/contacts_v1

So, the old version is still around, at least for a little while.

I would expect that there may be some incompatibilities with the new contact manager (some fields not supported for instance; Google+ Circles are definitely not there) and that they may finally kill it altogether. (They've done similar things with other products.)

2013-12-02: As predicted, the original version of Google Contacts is no longer available. (I don't know exactly when they took it away.)

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