While apps provide some level of protection against robocalls, spam, and scams, they’re not bulletproof.
The hard truth is that call screening apps that claim to block unwanted calls are not always effective at actually stopping the call from getting through.
That, after all, is the point: to block unwanted calls.
The nuclear option is simple, very effective
But there’s one way* to stop these calls cold. And it may save your sanity in the process: Do Not Disturb.
Here’s the starter kit for turning on Do Not Disturb on the iPhone and Android:
- With the iPhone it’s a snap. Go to Settings, then tap on “Do Not Disturb” then select “Allow Calls From” then “All Contacts.”
- On Android 9 “Pie,” Go to “Sound” then turn on “Do Not Disturb.” Like the iPhone, you can set exceptions for things like Contacts.
There are several ways to tweak how restrictive Do Not Disturb is, as shown in the images at the top and bottom of this article. Instead of explaining all of these different settings/tweaks in unreadable, prolix text, the images offer the most concise, clear guides.
Google also provides written how-to on its support page: here.
As does Apple: here.
The beauty of tweaking the settings is it turns Do Not Disturb into a very effective robocall/spam/scam blocking tool.
On caveat: this will stop all unwanted calls from ringing your phone. That includes unexpected calls that aren’t necessarily unwanted. And notifications will be blocked too.
But you won’t miss calls completely. You will typically see it as a missed call or a voicemail. Again, use trial and error to determine if this is the best option for you. And, again, you can toggle this on and off.
*I use Do Not Disturb on my iPhone, currently an iPhone XS Max running iOS 12, and on my Android phone, currently a Google Pixel 3 XL running Android 9 “Pie.”
Cruthers, Brooke. “How to Block, Stop Robocalls, Scams: ‘Nuclear Option’ on iPhone XS, iOS 12, Pixel 3, Android” Forbes.com January 27, 2019