On the heels of the Federal Communications Commission looking to give phone carriers more power to block robocalls, and efforts in Congress to legislate the elimination of robocalls, comes the news that Apple is going to let Siri automatically block calls from people you do not know.
At its Worldwide Developers Conference this week, Apple announced a number of new products and features (by the way … Is Apple serious about charging $999 for a monitor stand?), including updates to the operating system for its iPhones, iOS. The next version of iOS is iOS 13, and that will include a feature that will only ring your phone when Siri recognizes the phone number of the person making the call, either because the number is in the person’s contacts, email, or messages apps. If the number is not recognized, the call will be automatically sent to voicemail. Here is how Apple describes the service:
A new setting protects users from unknown and spam callers. When the setting is turned on, iOS uses Siri intelligence to allow calls to ring your phone from numbers in Contacts, Mail, and Messages. All other calls are automatically sent to voicemail.
Android offers a similar feature on its phones, according to a published report.
However, news of Apple’s new service was not welcomed by everyone.
“Anyone who runs a business from their cellphone will be sending every new customer to voicemail,” because of the new service, one individual commented on Twitter. Said another: “Has anyone told @Apple that not all unknown callers are robocalls? Just wondering…”