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June 10, 2022

What is Caller ID and How Does it Work?

What is Caller ID and How Does it Work?

Caller IDs were introduced to the world in the 1980s, making people's lives significantly easier. Imagine when you would only hear the phone ring but not know who is calling! Technological advancements improved it from simple Plain Old Telephone systems, or POTS, to Internet calling.

In no time, marketers had recognized the untapped market within and started to make sales, marketing, and supporting strategies surrounding it.

Caller ID is a built-in feature of phones, allowing them to identify an incoming caller by phone number (and sometimes by name). Early modems used a technique called FSP to transmit data over telephone lines. Caller identification uses online databases and caller recognition technology to identify callers before anyone picks up the phone.

Currently, Caller ID is primarily featured in VoIP phone services. You may be curious about what is caller ID and how it helps us. Read on to learn more.

What is Caller ID?

A caller ID is a built-in feature on phones that allows these devices to identify an incoming caller by phone number (and sometimes names). This feature offers a digital display and uses caller identification tech and online databases to recognize callers before the call is received. Called ID technology is not perfect and can provide wrong information occasionally.

Up to 15 characters can be displayed for a name and 10 digits for the mobile number. It is an essential feature in almost all commercial phone providers, including VoIP, landline, and mobile services.

What is MY Caller ID?

Caller ID enables an individual to screen calls selectively and not answer calls from unknown numbers. If you have received a call and need to identify the caller, we've got you covered. We have compiled a list of ways to check caller ID on landlines, iPhones, and Android.

How to Check Caller ID on Landline

1. VoIP Plans

Traditional landline service providers do not usually provide free caller ID service. You will need to sign up for a wireless landline service or install a Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP). With this, you can check caller ID on Landline.

You can install VoIP onto your landline quite easily. First, you will need to choose a VoIP plan. Choose one according to your need and budget. You will also need to purchase some necessary equipment to implement the VoIP system into your landline. Such equipment may include a router.

Install the equipment as instructed and ask your service provider to activate it. Now you will be able to check caller ID on Landline.

2. Wireless Landline Service - Community Phone

Subscribing to a VoIP plan is a hassle. Often, the plans are too expensive and not worth the money. Community Phone offers a better alternatives with its wireless landline services that includes excellent call features.

Community Phone is a simple yet reliable landline service that works independently of the Internet. Think landlines but an upgraded version - without the copper wires jamming up your house. You can use this without the Internet, and you get unlimited nationwide calling.

Community Phone - Wireless Landline Service

You can either get a new, local number or keep your old one by transferring to Community Phone. A super-easy setup process will have you hooked in a few minutes, and it will connect with any landline phone.

With Community Phone, you can choose how you want your caller ID to appear when calling someone else. However, by default, the person you call will see your phone number when you call them. If you'd like to change that to your name, there is a form on the website that you have to fill up.

Features to Enjoy with CommunityPhone:

  • No internet or copper wires required
  • Unlimited nationwide calling
  • Customer support you can actually reach
  • 30-second setup
  • Works during power outages

Check Coverage at Your Address and Sign Up Now!

Or call our landline specialists at

How to Check Caller ID on Android

Usually, the caller id of the person calling should appear on the screen of your android phone during a call. But if someone chooses to hide their caller ID from the settings of their android/ IOS device, then it becomes impossible to view the caller ID.

Thankfully, this can be overcome with the help of some apps that you can find in the Google PlayStore. You can use TrueCaller, Hiya, and Mr. Number. Install Any one of these apps on your android and allow them access on your phone. Then these apps will show you the caller id of the person who is calling.

How To Check Caller ID on iPhone?

Although iPhone and Android run on different operating systems, they both share the same issue with caller IDs. If the caller hides their ID via phone setting or any other manner, your iPhone won’t be able to show the ID.

There is nothing much to do about it but to install a third-party app, or call your call service provider and request the identity of the number.

Regarding the apps, you can use TrueCaller and TrapCall for your iPhone.

How Does Caller ID Work?

The earliest modems used a technique known as FSP to send bits over phone lines. FSK is short for Frequency Shift Keying and, despite seeming like a jargon-filled concept, is relatively simple. One tone (or frequency: 1,200 Hz) represents the binary digit 1, whereas another tone (2,200 Hz) signifies a binary 0.

A modem shifts frequency based on if it wants to transmit a 0 or a 1. The speed of the frequency is dependent on the speed, otherwise termed baud rate.

Cellphone caller ID functionality works in 2 stages. Phone companies use a 1,200 baud modem that relies on the FSK technique to send caller ID information to the receiver's home. It is received by the caller ID box in the form of ASCII character data.

Phone Number Identification

Generally, the number displayed is the registered phone number of the caller. Outgoing calls through mobile phones or landlines rely on this technique. However, VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) calls' information services are changeable.

In simpler words, a caller-controlled web interface lets them edit the data. This feature makes it simpler for users to find call-back digits when a call is routed.

Name Identification

The receiving party's phone carrier recognizes the name of the caller. But, the information from the phone carrier is not retrieved from their interior database. Carriers utilize CNAM (Calling Name) to intercept the phone number associated with a particular contact name.

How To Change Your Caller ID

Now that you have the answer to “what is my caller ID”, you can request to change your caller ID phone number and name. The customization process varies between phone providers, and there are multiple layers to it.

Some service providers can be reached through a customer service representative, while others have a convenient online platform where you can directly apply for the change.

Traditional Landline Service

The traditional caller ID information retrieval method involves deriving the data from the phone number linked to the caller's phone line. Caller information for the POTS lines is directly connected to the central switch of the phone company. As a result, analog landlines can only display the number of the line that it uses.

All you have to do is request a name change. For a landline phone number, chances are, you will have to call a customer support line and speak to a representative.

Wireless Landline Service - Community Phone

When using Community Phone, you can select how you'd like your caller ID to look when you call someone else. However, by default, the person you call will see your phone number when you call them. If you'd like to change that to your name, there is a form on the website that you have to fill up.

Community Phone's plans start at $39/month. To learn more about it, make sure to check out the website.

Or call our landline specialists at

VoIP Caller ID

VoIP services let you change the caller ID display number on top of the name, a service you do not get in landline networks. Some providers also offer users the power to configure this data straight through a web interface - no need to contact a customer care representative.

Hosted VoIP organizations generally send caller ID information updates to the main CNAM databases within a day. Phone number lines don’t feature the same number/wire pairing like the analog lines. A VoIP service can generally transmit any phone number of choice to the one you are calling.

CNAM will be cross-matched with the number to display the caller's name. VoIP services provide a name identifier and the caller ID information. Still, most phone carriers do not usually display the data (exceptions apply in the case of SIP to SIP or extension to extension call).

Landline services use the same phone number and name across customers, but a few VoIP providers let you use unique caller ID numbers/names to select users within the system.

More Here: VoIP vs Landline: Know the Difference


If you want to change your caller ID on your iPhone, then you can do it from the settings of your iPhone. First, open the settings of your iPhone. Then select Phone. There you will find an option named “Show my caller ID”. Tap on it and it will take you to the page where you can change your caller ID on your iPhone.

However, not all cell phone service providers will let you change your caller ID from your iPhone. You will need to contact the service providers and follow their instructions for editing your caller ID on your iPhone.


It is quite easy to change the caller ID on Android. To do that, just go to your Android settings. Then select ‘Call Settings’ from the list. Brose to ‘Additional Settings’. Now tap on Caller ID. This page will have the necessary functions that you may wish to change about your caller ID.

Sometimes, this procedure may not work. That is because not all call service providers will let you change your caller ID from your phone. You will need to contact them and follow their instructions regarding changing your caller ID.

Final Thoughts

That was all on what is caller ID. Hopefully, this information is enough to provide you with insights into what this feature does for you and your privacy. You can enable or disable it according to your wish (for the most part). You need a good phone service provider for that.

Related Questions Regarding Caller ID

Do landline phones have caller IDs?

Yes. You get caller ID with just about any commercial phone provider, mobile phone services, landline, VoIP, or Community Phone. Caller IDs can be concealed, but they serve as valuable information for both callers and receivers.

What is a no caller ID?

If you get a call and the phone's screen displays the words "No Caller ID," the caller blocked their phone number from showing when they call you. Most users should be able to enable/disable their caller ID on request.

Why don't cellphones have a caller ID?

Phone service adds CNAM data of their subscribers to the central databases. Internal data retrieval shows the caller IDs on your screen when you get a call. Some companies do not add this information to the CNAM database, perhaps due to privacy concerns.

Does caller ID show name or number?

Caller ID typically shows the number, but it can also show the name in some cases.

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