New Vodafone network API lets smartphone users know who’s calling

Vodafone is now offering reputable companies and organisations like banks, hospitals, and schools, a new network Application Programmable Interface (API) that informs smartphone users who is calling them.

Many people distrust anonymous calls but readily admit to missing important ones, but now Vodafone Germany has a solution with the launch of a new service, CallerID, It is based on a service Vodafone has used itself when contacting customers since 2021, which means they can identify Vodafone shops or sales calls easily. Today, half a million telephone calls are enriched every month with further information using this innovative service.

CallerID is now being made available to other organisations via a Vodafone network API. Network APIs are a set of rules based on industry-wide open standards that allow developers to plug into and use the low-latency benefits, speed, and scale of Vodafone’s pan-European 5G network through a simple and secure user interface.

First Orion, a leading provider of branded smartphone displays, is one of the first companies to take advantage of CallerID to offer an enhanced service to its approved list of third-party companies and public sector organisations. Using up to 30 characters, First Orion can display information on who is calling, such as an estate agent, helping to build greater trust between an organisation and end users. This will help the 87% of respondents to First Orion’s survey who said they felt uncomfortable answering calls from unknown phone numbers, with many adding that this meant they missed at least one important call per month.

CallerID is a network-based solution which means it does not require an additional smartphone app to process and display the information. The only requirement is for the mobile device to support voice over the Internet (VoLTE), which most modern smartphones do. The technology underpinning CallerID is based on the Network as a Platform (NaaP) technology, a Vodafone initiative that allows developers to enjoy the full potential of networks by sharing its capabilities through APIs.

Currently, more than 30 million Vodafone Germany mobile customers benefit from CallerID, and ultimately mobile customers from all network operators should be able to receive this call information. Vodafone is already in discussions with other market players to widen the use of the service. In addition, Vodafone is working on having enriched content like logos and short videos displayed on mobile phone screens in the future. Here, the MyVodafone service app will serve as a conduit for incoming calls, and using CallerID, create new customer-focussed services.

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