Robocalls — those annoying phone calls from telemarketers or scam artists — plague us all. Since 2015, the number of robocalls has increased by the billions. Though both iOS and Android users are affected, new data shows that iOS users have it much worse.
YouMail, a call blocking
To put that into context, that’s around 900 million more robocalls for iPhone users in one month.
These calls vary in content, generally offering student debt forgiveness, lower credit card interest rates, car warranties, health care plans, or plain old scams. Often they arrive via local phone numbers that make us more likely to answer.
Why is it a bigger problem on iPhone?
Breaking down the data further, it shows that iPhone users get 22% more scam calls, 32% more payment reminder calls, and 25% more telemarketing calls than Android users. YouMail says the reason iOS users receive more calls is due to the way iOS handles blocked calls.
With iOS’s well-intentioned block list — it is designed to minimize risk by preventing apps from silently taking over phone calls — it actually makes it impossible for call blocking apps to properly implement dynamic block
Can you not block robocalls at all then?
Yes and no. It’s complicated, but some call blocking apps will help. However, it’s
What is the solution?
There might be more than one solution here. Android already has solutions in place for its users, so it is possible to do something similar with iOS devices.
One of the things Apple could do is allow call blocking apps to “wake up” when a spam call comes in. Then, you can choose what to do with that robocall — ignore it, hang up, stop the ringer, or even send the call to voicemail.
This would greatly increase your options and put some constraints on the spam callers. Plus, you could also make sure that the app isn’t blocking the wrong
Another thing that Apple could do is set up some type of permission system where the app can’t access the call unless the owner gives permission. This could be something as simple as a push notification.
Making a change to how iOS devices handle spam calls, giving more access to the apps that are designed to stop them, could greatly improve the robocall issues for iOS users. For now, however, those with iPhones will have to deal with a larger volume of unwanted calls, and Android users—despite having to deal with their fair share—can gloat in the fact that their operating system makes robocalls a little more manageable.