November 7, 2022

What is call screening? How it works and best practices

What is call screening? How it works and best practices

When your phone rings and you don't recognize the number, you have to decide at that moment whether or not picking it up is the right thing to do. Sometimes it's just an acquaintance or someone from work calling, but other times it’s spam, a person trying to sell you something, or even a collection agency.

You’re not alone if you’re one of the many people who don't answer the phone when it rings. A Pew Research study found that just 19% of people pick up their phones when they don’t recognize the number calling them. If you don't answer the phone and it turns out to be someone important or a call you need to take, however, it's frustrating to learn you’ve missed it.

This is a problem, and one that call screening aims to solve. Without a doubt, Americans don't like to answer unknown calls. If they have a way to avoid spam and figure out who's on the other line every time, they’re more likely to answer.

Call screening offers a number of core benefits, including providing you with the information you need to make fast decisions when your phone rings. It’s simple to use, and once it’s on your phone you can rely on it to get the job done.

What is call screening?

You might be wondering, what does call screening mean, exactly? In short, call screening displays the name associated with the phone number calling you. It lets you decide in a moment's time if you should pick up the phone or not — you don’t have to answer to see who’s calling.

This technology works to seamlessly identify incoming calls so you have a better idea of what the conversation on that call would be like. For those who receive calls on a daily basis — often many times per day from numbers they don’t recognize — having call screening technology on their device can be a way to save time and alleviate frustration.

By contrast, if you don’t have call screening available, then you have no way of knowing who’s calling, where they’re calling from, or any other information about the call. If you miss a call because you were in a meeting, you won’t know if your child's school called with an important message or if that phone call was just someone selling you a fake car warranty.

Call screening technology puts you back in charge of your phone, so you don’t have to feel like you need to ignore unknown calls. It’s designed to be very simple and straightforward, requiring you to do nothing more than just look at your phone to see who's calling.

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What are the benefits of call screening?

Utilizing call screening is perhaps one of the simplest and best decisions you’ll make. There are virtually no drawbacks and you'll see a number of benefits:

Accept or reject calls in seconds

With call screening, when a person calls you, you’re able to decide if you want to accept the call or reject it with the swipe of a finger. You can make that decision because all available information about the caller is displayed right on your screen.

No need to Google phone numbers

If you’re one of the many people who run to Google when their phone rings to see who it is, you no longer have to do so. The information is already displayed on your phone. You decide what to do next.

Block unwanted numbers as they come in

When you receive a spam call or a person you don’t want to talk to calls you, simply block the number. That way, if that number tries you again, your phone won’t even ring. They’re unable to leave you a message or bother you at all. It’s a great way to get scammers and telemarketers to stop bothering you, and you can unblock calls if you want to do so later on.

Establish an audio prompt

You can also set up the call screening tool to provide a specific audio prompt when a number calls you. For example, you can set it up so that you hear the name of the person calling. You can then choose if you’d rather pick up or just let it go to voicemail.

Keep spammers off your phone

Not only does a spam call interrupt your day and create frustration, but it also makes it harder for other people to call you. When you start blocking unwanted callers, you'll notice your phone is quieter and the right people can get a hold of you more easily.

How does call screening work?

Call screening services are designed to be highly intuitive and easy to use, so there's no risk in using them. Here's what happens when you receive a phone call:

  • The call screening application goes to work to gather information about that phone number based on data available to it.
  • The information collected is easily displayed on your mobile phone screen. You can see it instantly — often within seconds of when the phone starts ringing.
  • You can answer the phone or swipe the toggle on the app that turns it off. You can also block that caller from calling you again with a simple tap of your device.

The system learns from you. When you note that a call is spam, it will not keep sending you that phone call and will log that information in a database so it can then help other people avoid the same dialer.

What is call screening able to do for you?

The U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) emphasizes that robocalls are a widespread problem. Each month, Americans receive billions of these unwanted calls. Even as technology continues to improve to stop them at the source, many still sneak by. The FCC knows they are a problem, but they don’t necessarily have a way to stop them alone.

With call screening, you gain the ability to stop unwanted calls from impacting you and your quality of life. Do you have to use it? No. But if you do, you could see a lot of improvement, including:

  • Fewer calls that come to you as unknown
  • Better ability to manage who’s calling you
  • Improved protection for your privacy
  • Less risk of falling for a scam
  • Support for seniors and others who are often a target of spam callers

In addition, when you take action against spammers, you harm their ability to profit from illegal robocalls.

What features does call screening offer?

There are a few different call screening services available, but not all are the same quality. If you’re looking for the best solution, you need to choose a call screening service that can help you in multiple ways. Look for features like:

Call blocking algorithm

This enables the app to automatically reject calls that are known to be spam. A predictive spam call blocking algorithm works proactively to analyze calls as they come in before your phone rings. That makes it even easier for you to avoid spammers. It also means fewer interruptions.

Answer Bots

The best call screening solutions offer you a chance to get a little revenge on scammers. When a call comes in from a likely spammer, Robokiller’s Answer Bots go to work sending a prerecorded message that the spammer may unwittingly interact with. After a while, they tend to give up, and then you can listen to the results in the app.

Customization options

The very best call screening solutions provide you with lots of ability to manage your preferences. That includes being less or more aggressive about blocking incoming phone calls. With Robokiller, you can set up blocklists that you can add to and subtract from over time. It’s just another way we help you get good calls only®.

To help you to choose the best call screening tool for you, think about what you hate the most. Then, look for a solution that can help you eliminate those problems. 

What is Robokiller? 

Robokiller is one of the most recognized and respected robocall blocking apps available today. It’s designed to provide you with the very best results possible. Our call blocking algorithm predicts and blocks 99% of the robocallers and spammers who try to reach you.

When an unfamiliar caller tries to reach you, our AI assistant answers and asks the caller to say who they are and their reason for calling. Robokiller then gives you that information in real time so you can decide if you should answer or not.

Here are some of Robokiller’s core features you should know about:

  • Robokiller utilizes FTC-award-winning audio fingerprinting technology.
  • You can easily add unwanted callers to your blocklist so they’ll never reach you.
  • You can pause call blocking if you’re waiting for a call from an unknown number.
  • You can send spammers to hilariously long Answer Bot recordings to give them a taste of their own medicine!
  • You can view all blocked and missed calls to see who’s been trying to call you.
  • You can report scam numbers you’ve encountered, which helps the Robokiller community (we’ll ensure they don’t pass by anymore)
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More about Robokiller

Want to learn more about call screening and the award-winning Robokiller app? Here are a few FAQs.

Can I try out Robokiller without paying for it?

Yes. You can start a 7-day risk free trial to see for yourself how well the app works. If you normally get a lot of spam calls, you’ll likely notice the difference right away.

What happens if someone calls me that I want to talk to, but call screening is on?

When a friend calls from a number you don’t know, call screening gathers information from that person. With Robokiller, they’ll receive an audio message they can respond to. It only takes a moment, and once they provide information, you can connect with them.

Does call screening take me off of spammers’ lists?

Spammers get information from many sources. No matter where they find your number, Robokiller’s technology can identify the scam and block them from reaching you.


What is call screening?

Call screening is a technology that displays the name associated with the phone number calling you, allowing you to make a decision about whether or not to answer the call. It identifies incoming calls, giving you a better idea of what the conversation might entail. One tool that offers this service is Robokiller, an app that not only screens calls but also has an AI assistant that asks unknown callers to identify themselves and state their reason for calling.

What are the benefits of call screening?

Call screening enables you to accept or reject calls based on the information displayed about the caller. It saves you the effort of searching unknown numbers and allows you to block unwanted numbers as they come in. You can establish an audio prompt  and protect yourself from spam calls. An app like Robokiller offers these benefits and more, including an algorithm that blocks 99% of robocallers and spammers.

How does call screening work?

Call screening works in a fairly straightforward way. When a call comes in, the call screening application gathers information about the incoming phone number based on available data. This information is then displayed on your mobile phone screen, often within seconds of when the phone starts to ring.

Is call screening and call blocking the same?

No, call screening and call blocking are not the same thing. Call screening is the process of identifying who is calling you, while call blocking is the process of preventing certain numbers from reaching your phone at all. However, they often go hand-in-hand. For example, with Robokiller, once you identify an unwanted caller through its call screening feature, you can easily block that number to prevent future calls.

Free 7 day trial
Fight back against spam and reclaim your phone.
You’re one step away from a spam-free phone (and a little poetic justice, thanks to Answer Bots).
Sign up for a 7-day free trial

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