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How to Stop Unwanted Calls By Blocking Them on Your Phone

How to Stop Unwanted Calls By Blocking Them on Your Phone

Let’s face facts; there are numerous reasons why you would want to block a number on your phone. Unfortunately, almost all of these are unpleasant, whether they pertain to persistent ex-partners, scammers or telemarketers who refuse to take your silence as a hint that they are being obtrusive.

While having to block a number is never nice (especially if it belongs to someone that you know), it is relatively easy to achieve this regardless of which mobile service you use. So, here is a breakdown of how to block numbers across multiple device types and operators.

How to Block a Number on iOS, Android and Windows

Before you seek to block numbers on your smartphone, you can look to impose a general ban by adding your number to the National Do Not Call Registry[1]. Ran by the FTC, this registry is updated every 24-hours, while it can lead to the cessation of nuisance calls within a month.

This does not help when looking to block private numbers, however, such as those that relate to former friends, partners or colleagues. This is where the below guide will come in handy, as it will help you to block all unwanted incoming calls to your handset.

iOS

There are various ways to block numbers on Apple’s iOS, whether you are responding directly with a call or browsing your contacts list. You should also note that, when blocking someone from sending texts, making a voice call or selecting FaceTime, the individual in question will automatically be banned from all three channels of communication.

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When responding to a recent all, visit the ‘Phone’ app and select recent. Then locate the number and navigate through the circle next to it. This will bring up a screen with information pertaining to the call (see below), and you need to scroll down before selecting ‘Block this Caller’.

    When blocking an existing contact, you need to navigate through Settings > Phone > Call Blocking & Identification > Block Contact. This will bring up a list of your contacts, enabling you to block one or even multiple numbers as you wish. You can also achieve this goal by clicking through Settings > Messages > Blocked > Add New.

    Android

    When dealing with Android, the course of action that you take will depend on the age of the operating system that you are using (this is not the case with iPhones). So you will need to determine the precise iteration of Android that you are using before blocking numbers, as this will ensure that you make the right choice.

    For Marshmallow or above (Nougat is the most recent version), open Dialer and go to your recent calls list. Then find the offending number and select ‘Block / Report Spam’. You should not that you can block a number without reporting it as spam (when dealing with a person rather than a telemarketing company, for example), but you will need to uncheck the prior to confirming the block.

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    When using Lollipop or below, go to the Phone app and select Call Settings > Call Rejection > Auto Reject List. You then have to manually type in the number and search for it (make a note if it is unknown to you) and then confirm.

    When using Messenger (across all Android operating systems), you will need to directly tap the number that sent you the original message, before selecting Block / Report Slam once again. The same principle applies here as before, so don’t forget to uncheck the box if don’t want to report spam.

    Finally, if you wish to block a number belonging to an existing contact, go directly into Messenger and select Menu > Blocked Contacts > Add a Number. Then enter the number you want to block and confirm, taking care to ensure that you selected the right one of course!

    Windows Phone

    Windows Phones are increasingly popular in the modern age, as along with the Samsung Galaxy S range they provide viable competition for Apple and Android. They also utilise a different operating system, so it is important to recognize this when blocking numbers.

    With Windows Phones, you can block calls and messages from a single number in one fell swoop. Simply head to Settings and navigate through Call > SMS Filter, before accepting the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy and switching Blocks Calls to On.

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    Then visit the Phone app, hold down the number that you want to block and select Block Number to confirm. This will prevent all forms of communication with the chosen number, helping you to avoid any unwanted correspondence.

    A Look at the Best Apps for Blocking Numbers

    Of course, we also live in an age where apps can be used to block numbers. The benefit of using these apps is that they tend to work across all iterations of specific operating systems, meaning that users can become familiar with them over time while they also provide a comprehensive and one-stop blocking service. Here are some of the best apps:

    The Hiya App (for iOS): Available to iOS 10 users, Hiya is the single most advanced phone spam protection engine in the mobile market. This not only intuitively detects and blocks robocalls and telemarketers, but it also highlights potential fraudsters who are seeking your personal data. It also provides a personalized block list, helping you to manage your contacts more seamlessly.

    Sync. ME (for iOS) : Apple have clearly made a concerted effort to enhance its call blocking features in iOS 10, and the free app Sync. ME is a prominent example of this. It includes numerous features for blocking unwanted calls, including the identification of unknown numbers (which can prevent you from blocking numbers that may ultimately add value), alerts you to spam communications and adds caller photo’s to your social contacts on Twitter, Facebook and Google +.

    The Safest Call Blocker (for Android): This is Android’s supported call blocker, and one that comes with a premium (paid) version that removes ads. It is quick to access and easy to use, while it also helps you to establish automated settings for blocking calls and managing contacts in real-time.

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    Mr. Number (for Android) : This is an initially free app that immediately offers 20 free caller look-ups, at which point every subsequent look-up is paid. It has a tool that automatically blocks spam messages, however, without the need for you to blacklist specific numbers. This can save time and help you to block numbers more seamlessly.

      Calls Blacklist (for Android) : Then we have Android’s Calls Blacklist, which will ban both voice calls and SMS messages from an offending number in one-feel swoop. This is so long as you use the default SMS app on Android 4.4 or above, however, as otherwise you will need to block communications separately. Regardless, the call blocking feature is fast and efficient, while it also allows you to select suspicious starting digits and intuitively block all related numbers going forward.

      So there you have it; a selection of the best ways to block numbers regardless of whether you use an iOS, Android and Windows device. The modern range of apps also makes this process easier than ever, so look out for the best tools online.

      Reference

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      Last Updated on February 15, 2019

      7 Tools to Help Keep Track of Goals and Habits Effectively

      7 Tools to Help Keep Track of Goals and Habits Effectively

      Now that 2011 is well underway and most people have fallen off the bandwagon when it comes to their New Year’s resolutions (myself included), it’s a good time to step back and take an honest look at our habits and the goals that we want to achieve.

      Something that I have learned over the past few years is that if you track something, be it your eating habits, exercise, writing time, work time, etc. you become aware of the reality of the situation. This is why most diet gurus tell you to track what you eat for a week so you have an awareness of the of how you really eat before you start your diet and exercise regimen.

      Tracking daily habits and progress towards goals is another way to see reality and create a way for you clearly review what you have accomplished over a set period of time. Tracking helps motivate you too; if I can make a change in my life and do it once a day for a period of time it makes me more apt to keep doing it.

      So, if you have some goals and habits in mind that need tracked, all you need is a tracking tool. Today we’ll look at 7 different tools to help you keep track of your habits and goals.

      Joe’s Goals

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        Joe’s Goals is a web-based tool that allows users to track their habits and goals in an easy to use interface. Users can add as many goals/habits as they want and also check multiple times per day for those “extra productive days”. Something that is unique about Joe’s Goals is the way that you can keep track of negative habits such as eating out, smoking, etc. This can help you visualize the good things that you are doing as well as the negative things that you are doing in your life.

        Joe’s Goals is free with a subscription version giving you no ads and the “latest version” for $12 a year.

        Daytum

          Daytum

          is an in depth way of counting things that you do during the day and then presenting them to you in many different reports and groups. With Daytum you can add several different items to different custom categories such as work, school, home, etc. to keep track of your habits in each focus area of your life.

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          Daytum is extremely in depth and there are a ton of settings for users to tweak. There is a free version that is pretty standard, but if you want more features and unlimited items and categories you’ll need Daytum Plus which is $4 a month.

          Excel or Numbers

            If you are the spreadsheet number cruncher type and the thought of using someone else’s idea of how you should track your habits turns you off, then creating your own Excel/Numbers/Google spreadsheet is the way to go. Not only do you have pretty much limitless ways to view, enter, and manipulate your goal and habit data, but you have complete control over your stuff and can make it private.

            What’s nice about spreadsheets is you can create reports and can customize your views in any way you see fit. Also, by using Dropbox, you can keep your tracker sheets anywhere you have a connection.

            Evernote

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              I must admit, I am an Evernote junky, mostly because this tool is so ubiquitous. There are several ways you can implement habit/goal tracking with Evernote. You won’t be able to get nifty reports and graphs and such, but you will be able to access your goal tracking anywhere your are, be it iPhone, Android, Mac, PC, or web. With Evernote you pretty much have no excuse for not entering your daily habit and goal information as it is available anywhere.

              Evernote is free with a premium version available.

              Access or Bento

                If you like the idea of creating your own tracker via Excel or Numbers, you may be compelled to get even more creative with database tools like Access for Windows or Bento for Mac. These tools allow you to set up relational databases and even give you the option of setting up custom interfaces to interact with your data. Access is pretty powerful for personal database applications, and using it with other MS products, you can come up with some pretty awesome, in depth analysis and tracking of your habits and goals.

                Bento is extremely powerful and user friendly. Also with Bento you can get the iPhone and iPad app to keep your data anywhere you go.

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                You can check out Access and the Office Suite here and Bento here.

                Analog Bonus: Pen and Paper

                All these digital tools are pretty nifty and have all sorts of bells and whistles, but there are some people out there that still swear by a notebook and pen. Just like using spreadsheets or personal databases, pen and paper gives you ultimate freedom and control when it comes to your set up. It also doesn’t lock you into anyone else’s idea of just how you should track your habits.

                Conclusion

                I can’t necessarily recommend which tool is the best for tracking your personal habits and goals, as all of them have their quirks. What I can do however (yes, it’s a bit of a cop-out) is tell you that the tool to use is whatever works best for you. I personally keep track of my daily habits and personal goals with a combo Evernote for input and then a Google spreadsheet for long-term tracking.

                What this all comes down to is not how or what tool you use, but finding what you are comfortable with and then getting busy with creating lasting habits and accomplishing short- and long-term goals.

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