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Even with everything smartphones today can do for us, calling is still one of the main uses they have. Thanks to cell phones, we can even make calls to other countries. Further, depending on the app we might use, even this sort of call is something we might be able to make at no additional cost to us.
It is clear that standard voice calls or texts still hold great value in the modern world, but this ability can open us up to some minor inconveniences at best and scams at worst. Sometimes, you just need to be able to block someone’s number.
This could be to avoid stress with someone you know, or it might have to do with entities you don’t know gaining access to your number. In turn, they may wish to talk to you to get at your private data. Blocking numbers is meant to prevent all of this from happening.
Unfortunately, there are occasions where people might still get calls or texts from a number that they know is in their blocked list already. We’ll talk about why this happens, how you might fix it on Android or iOS, what options blocked numbers might still have with regard to voicemail, and what you can do about blocked call notifications and alerts.
Typically, blocking a number is supposed to prevent the protocols for that number from sending any data to you. This also works the other way, meaning that a number you have blocked will not be able to receive data from you. This is the standard procedure for both Android and iPhone models.
When you block a number, you don’t get any texts from that number, and you should not receive any notification that the blocked caller tried to send any data through at all. This practice is designed to ensure that there is no communication between you and the blocked party.
In most cases, the user is probably not aware that they have been blocked. This is because texts from the blocked number will appear to be sent on that user’s end. They will look the same as they would if the message first goes to a routing location and then your phone.
However, in reality, these messages should go nowhere. They appear delivered, but they remain in a kind of limbo state. This is true for any native texting app on the iPhone or Android, for example. In short, this means that texts, phone calls, and FaceTime video calls on the iPhone don’t go anywhere.
For that user, something like FaceTime would just ring indefinitely without you picking up, and you won’t get any notification that the video call is trying to go through on your end. Similarly, Google Duo is probably a standard part of any modern phone running Android, and you should get the same treatment from it.
Despite your best efforts to stop getting texts from numbers you have blocked already, some of these communications might still slip through the cracks. There are a couple of main reasons why this can happen. For iPhone users, it may have to do with which apps are receiving messages. The native app to receive messages between two iOS users is through Apple’s iMessage program.
This is one of the most convenient ways for people who each use Apple devices to talk to each other via text, but it is possible that you’ll want to block some numbers here. iMessage is its own app, and text messages from it should appear in a blue bubble.
However, you may have another texting app on your phone. This one would send standard SMS messages as well, and these should appear as a green bubble.
Although the two apps shouldn’t necessarily mix with one number, it is possible that another user has secondary programs that might allow them to send SMS messages as part of their plan, and these would be in addition to the native iMessage app.
If you are an iPhone user, it is possible that the number in question is blocked from sending either iMessage texts or standard SMS messages, but you haven’t blocked both options. While blocking a number should block it from contacting your phone at all, the protocols that are set up could allow one to slip through.
The other problem has to do with third-party apps. These are apps that do not come already installed on your phone, but you can download them from the store of your choice. Many of these apps give you new ways to communicate with people.
While this flexibility is nice, it can present some problems when your goal is to block a person from contacting you. When you do a standard block, it doesn’t necessarily prevent someone from trying to reach you via other means.
This could include apps like Instagram, Facebook, WhatsApp, and more. Therefore, even if you’ve already blocked a number the usual way, you might still get texts from that number if it is allowed access to third-party apps installed on your phone.
If you keep getting texts from blocked numbers, the methods you can try in order to get this under control should be the same for most iPhone or Android users. The main thing to do is check for all third-party apps that might have texting capabilities of any kind.
As we touched on earlier, there is a way to block numbers generically in both iOS and Android. However, this only tells the phone to block this number from sending data to native apps.
In order to be sure that the sender can no longer contact you, you may need to go through each third-party app that focuses on communication and block the number there as well.
Taking that step should help you ensure that the number well and truly cannot send text data of any kind to your phone. Whether you’re running iOS or Android, it may be a good idea to do a soft reset of the phone to make sure these settings are in place properly.
Check all the apps on your phone to ensure the correct numbers are in the blocked list. Most apps will keep their own logs of numbers you’ve chosen to block on them.
If necessary, you could try uninstalling some of the third-party apps on your phone. Depending on the protocols each app uses to send data, it may not be able to push texts from the sender to you if you do not have the companion app.
Generally, blocked numbers are still allowed to leave voicemails for you. In fact, any blocked calls should go to voicemail automatically from the other user’s end. This is the same thing they would experience if your phone was shut off or otherwise engaged when they tried to call you.
However, these blocked number voicemails should be sorted differently from your usual ones. They should not arrive in your regular inbox that handles voicemails from calls that you do wish to receive. If you scroll down on the voicemail section of the iPhone, you should see a list for blocked voicemails.
This is a separate box that contains voicemails from numbers that you decided to block. Depending on what apps you are using, Android may or may not have the same kind of separate box for voicemails, but the principle remains the same.
Much like preventing blocked numbers from leaving texts, the methods you can try for voicemails should be relatively similar on both iPhone or Android products.
Before we begin, it is worth noting that it can be difficult to get rid of blocked voicemails entirely. Although the suggestions we leave here might work, there isn’t a guarantee that you can stop blocked voicemails from showing up in your inbox completely.
The first thing you can try is to get a third-party app that deals with blocked numbers or spam callers. There are several apps out there, and they are designed to help the native functions of your phone filter blocked numbers and keep them from sending data.
Part of this data might include voicemails, and you may be able to use the app to take care of these in the same way that you do calls or texts. Some initial steps may be required on your end first, and you may need to add the blocked numbers to the app.
However, even this may not be enough to block the voicemails. This could be because voicemails are also handled by your network carrier. Since the carrier provides this service, it is one way that voicemails might still get through from blocked numbers. You can try contacting your provider to ask about blocking voicemails from these numbers.
One way to silence blocked call notifications on your phone is to give zero priority to calls at all. Doing this would turn off the notifications you might receive, but it could affect legitimate calls that you want to go through to you, too.
Otherwise, you can try a third-party app, and ones that are meant to deal with spam or filer calls may work best here. In the ’Settings’ for this app, you should be able to turn off notifications for blocked calls.
The ease with which we can make or receive calls from just about anywhere with network service is a great convenience. However, there are also ways that blocked callers might get through to your phone just as easily. You can use some of our tips to avoid most of this traffic. If nothing else is working, you may need to speak with your provider to figure out your options.