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Apple Aims to Fix Unwanted Calls by Blocking them All

With every iPhone release comes a bounty of fresh features in a new OS – and the latest version of iOS13 is no exception. While the iPhone’s hardware has steered these powerful devices further and further from their original dial-and-handset inspiration, Apple recently set its sights on putting the phone back into iPhone with a “Silence Unknown Callers” feature.

Everyone’s trying to get a widespread solution to scam and spam calls, Apple included. They’ve built a feature into iOS13 to silence unknown calls completely – all of them. It’s a fairly basic approach to a complex problem.

How to turn on Silence Unknown Callers

To turn on the feature, open settings, choose the Phone category, and toggle the switch for “Silence Unknown Callers.” With the feature turned on, any call you receive from an unknown number will be pushed straight to voicemail and listed in Recent calls. Apple says the feature silences all unknown calls except for those a user has previously called, any numbers saved in Contacts, and those that Siri suggests from Mail and Messages.

While this feature is sure to stop unwanted callers from bugging you, there’s always the possibility you’ll miss a wanted call too. Because the feature silences all unknown numbers, having it enabled means any number you haven’t interacted with will go directly to voicemail. We know what you’re thinking – who cares, right? Before you decide you don’t want to talk to anyone, think about all of the wanted calls you get in a regular week.

Uber drivers call to find your location. The pizza guy might ring to get the gate code for your neighborhood. Healthcare services like pharmacies and doctors’ offices all confirm appointments and deliver information through the phone. By silencing every unknown number, you could be missing out on essential communications (plus, your pizza is getting cold).

Even known numbers you have interacted with could be at risk with this solution. Many companies mask or reroute numbers to protect caller security, which could potentially get caught in Apple’s Unknown Callers filter.

Companies that make large volumes of calls should be concerned about these “auto-block” features as well. When your business relies on connecting with customers over the phone, more completed calls means more money in your pockets. First Orion aims to help companies connect by verifying callers as trustworthy, and showing exactly who’s calling with our branded Engage technology.

Most carriers in the US boast some form of spam-blocking feature, typically blocking numbers from known scammers and spammers – some of which are powered by First Orion’s data. They’re still not as severe as Apple’s solution, which relies on your personal call history and contacts to make the judgment on which calls to allow.

While Apple’s fix is a good start, it’s still not a perfect solution. We believe there’s a better way to address unknown calls through leading data analytics. First Orion solutions more effectively filter calls, distinguish the good from the bad, and even label unknown callers as safe to answer. Ready to make more completed calls with Engage? Let’s chat.

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