Monday, July 22, 2013

Pro Call Blocker version 2.0 - Caller ID Blocker Review

I have a VoIP SIP phone at home that automatically forwards to my cellphone when I'm not home and occasionally I get telemarketing calls so I looked for a way to block them so I wouldn't be disturbed. I found a way to block the calls on some of my cellphones using third party applications. However, when I'm at home, having my VoIP/SIP phone ring when I knew that the number was a telemarketing call or one of those credit card scam calls promising lower interest or cruise winning scam calls was starting to bother me.

I did some research and came across the Pro Call Blocker version 2.0 at a decent price online. I received it recently and easily set this up and did some testing with it and my cellphone and it worked. What happens is that when the call display shows a number that you've configured to block, it will pick up the phone and then hang up within one second. Depending on where you connect the device to (and whether it is connected in series or in parallel to the phone), the phones on the line might ring once or at most twice for calls on the blocked list. A workaround for this involves turning the ringers off all phones in the house and plugging a phone directly into the device (where the ringer for this phone is on) and only this phone will ring provided that the telephone company sends the caller ID information prior to or during the first ring. Using this set-up, if the caller is in the blocked list, this phone won't ring and since all the other phones in the house have their ringers off in this configuration, it will be as if no one actually called.

With my set-up, the display seemed to freeze occasionally requiring that I unplug the device, wait a few seconds, and then plug it back in. According to the manual, the reason for this is because I am using a VoIP SIP phone and the fix for this is to install an ADSL/DSL line filter. I installed the filter and the display on my device still freezes up so an ADSL/DSL line filter may or may not fix your frozen screen problem if you experience it. Unplugging the device, waiting a few seconds for the device to power itself off, and plugging it in again generally unfreezes the device but you will then have to reconfigure the year on the device if you want the device to accurately show you the day of the week that the call was received. It isn't necessary to reconfigure the date/time because the device will get the date/time from the first incoming call (except for the year). Because I have to unplug my device every few days, I've left the year at the default value of 2012 and I ignore the display portion showing the day of the week that the call was received (I only concentrate on the date and time the call was received which is accurate).

The device gets its power from the phone line which is a good thing and a bad thing. The good thing is that you don't require any batteries even though there appears to be what used to be a battery compartment at the bottom of the device which has been modified to not accept any batteries. The bad thing is if you are using a VoIP solution instead of a regular landline phone, in case of power failure the device will power off and you will have to reconfigure the year/date. On a regular Bell landline, this isn't a problem since power failures don't normally affect regular phone landlines so the device will almost always get power unless there is a major phone outage.

The device also allows users to block outgoing calls but I haven't tried this I don't really need this feature.

The device is programmed by plugging in a phone to the phone jack on the device. You can manually enter numbers that you want to block, manually enter area codes of numbers that you want to block, block all blocked/private calls, or block outgoing calls. The configuration instructions/manual can be found *HERE*.

For me, since my VoIP SIP provider doesn't allow me to block specific incoming phone numbers or phone area codes, I do find this to be a very useful tool.

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1 comment:

  1. How do I allow a specific 800 number to come thru if I have a block on 800 numbers?