Call blocking apps claim to stop calls

Posted at 9:07 AM, Dec 10, 2015
and last updated 2015-12-10 11:07:55-05

So you're on the "Do Not Call List." Does not matter.

Robocalls, telemarketers and scam artists somehow still find a way get through on your phone. It's annoying, intrusive, and in some cases, illegal.

Enough is enough. So we enlisted the help of viewers and colleagues to test call blocking apps for cell phones.

Viewer Lee Hooker says he gets several calls at all times of the day and night.

"I got one at 7:17 in the morning the other day," he said. 

He says he's filed complaints with the Federal Communications Commission and even wrote a letter to his congressional representative.

"The FCC says its not their job to enforce that do not call list," he said. He said his congressional representative wasn't of much help either.

ABC15 employee Libby Blevins is fed up too. 

 "I remember getting like five calls in one day," she said.

They each tested a different call blocking cell phone app as part of our unscientific two week test. Libby is used an app called Mr. recently picked it best at stopping cell phone spam. 

Some calls and texts are blocked automatically. Some you enter specifically and others can be a reported as a spam number. You decide whether the phone is disconnected or sent to voicemail.

"A little message will pop up on my phone and it'll ask me what I want to do," Libby explains.

She used the app for two weeks and says she's keeping it.

"Overall I think its great it worked really well for me," she said. 

Lee installed Truecaller on his cell phone. Time says it's best at identifying callers.

The number goes through their database of more than a billion numbers and displays who it is. The numbers already identified as spam are automatically flagged. Time says it also keeps out those one ring scam calls.

Lee was impressed. He said he got one of those fake IRS call the first day, but he marked that number as spam, and no more telemarketers for the rest of the experiment.

"My phone lights up and then poof its gone--it's really neat," he said. 

Now he's recommending it to his family too.

"My wife has it now, my kids have it, everybody loves it," Lee said. 

Both offer free basic apps which mean you may have to endure ads and limits to the amount of phone numbers you can look up. Premium services have a minimal monthly fee.

You'll also want to check with your service provider to see what call blocking services they offer.

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