Prank, crank, and mystery calls are unwanted in any environment, whether in the workplace, home, or elsewhere. Caller ID allows phone users to be in control of their incoming calls by sifting the important calls from those that are irrelevant.
Caller ID Basic Features
Caller ID is known by different names in different countries. Available in analog, digital, and VoIP form, it is a telephone service that transmits a caller’s number, name, or both to the called party’s telephone device.
Caller number display. Technically called Single Data Message Format (SDMF), this feature displays the telephone number of the caller and the date and time of the call.
Caller number and name display. In this feature, called Multiple Data Message Format (MDMF), the caller ID name (CNAM) and telephone number as well as the date and time of the call are displayed.
Most cell phone and Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) phone services include caller number identification as a basic feature. However, additional caller ID applications can be added depending on the phone service level applied for. Here are some of them.
Call duration. Typically built into smartphones, more advanced caller ID applications allow users to see the start and end times of calls.
Geographic location data. Some caller ID applications can display where a person is calling from. This feature has been used for years in 911 emergency calls. When a call is received, the address of the caller is displayed on the called party’s telephone screen, enabled by Global Positioning System (GPS) data.
Video functionality. Video calling is possible when both calling and called parties use a video-enabled calling application. With this feature, users can play videos for the purpose of sharing.
Talking caller ID. This application works only in telephone devices that have speakerphone capability. With a voice component added to the standard caller identification feature, the system announces the caller’s number, name, or both in voice form.
Photo caller ID. While this capability is not available on landline telephone systems, it has become a standard feature of most smartphones. This technology allows the photo of a caller to be displayed on the calling party’s screen along with his or her telephone number during an incoming call. It requires an internal camera to be used. Users may have the option to access the application from a wireless platform provided by their carriers, or download it directly from the Internet.
Caller ID Benefits
Caller ID is an add-on functionality of most phones, and many telephone consumers want it for convenience. It allows them to screen calls and selectively answer those that matter to them. The calling identification system also stores a record of recent calls, allowing telephone users to call someone back after a missed call. It likewise enables consumers to prioritize replies. Caller ID is a useful feature that saves time and prevents unfavorable confrontations with mysterious callers.