A few of them might be spam calls. But some of them are people we might actually want to talk to, but either didn't leave a message, or were confused about what number they had dialed. We get this a lot from friends who somehow call my work number responding to the number on their caller ID, but not the number left in the message I left for them.
They then return the call, get a message that sounds like an office, and hang up.
We also get these sorts of missed calls from businesses we want to speak to, and they, too, sometimes don't leave a message. Part of this is Google Voice's fault, because it takes something like eight rings before Google Voice picks up. But no matter what, we still want to know who is calling. If you type a phone number into Google, you rarely get anything helpful. Most of the time, you get listings of numbers and links to very shady-seeming phone number reverse lookup services. These reverse lookup services promise to tell you who's at the end of the number — for a fee.
Sadly, not one of these services seems to come from a major, recognizable company. They all sort of seem to be run by some guy named Yegor out of Belarus, and I worry that if I give him my credit card number, he'll not only randomly choose some names from a text file, he'll also try to sell me his family's goat — and then sell my credit card number for a penny on some IRC channel. First, telephone number reverse lookup in today's world is the job of an aggregator.
Phone numbers are assigned by a lot of different carriers and isolating which number was assigned to who, from what carrier, is just the sort of thing Google's databases should be good at.
It's also a great deal-making opportunity for Google's many lawyers, especially since they have carrier relationships with most cellular carriers through Android. Google already uses information it gathers about you to tune your results. It tunes them via Google Plus circles, and it also tunes them by best-guess geo-location or geo-IP lookups.
For example, as soon as I type in "Home Depot" in Google's search box, I'm immediately shown a map with the nearest Home Depot store highlighted perfectly. For reverse phone number lookup to work reliably and helpfully, Google has to do a lot more cleanup than they normally do on search results or even shopping results. Google shouldn't just present a pile of random listings, but really add some value, perhaps presenting the top three probable sources of the call. Facebook knows a tremendous amount about most of us, but Google could integrate its social graph right into Google Voice.
Using Google Plus, Google could scan your circles — circles linked to circles through the social graph, to see if the phone number belongs to anyone in those circles or exists on any data indexed by Google that relates to people in those circles. Google would have a much better chance of using circle-enhanced searching to identify phone numbers.
Even better, though, would be if Google provided this as a feature in Google Voice. Rather than listing a number without a contact name, when a call comes in, it could list the number and then list three "possible" caller names, right in the message or the Web interface.
After all, since Google is the oracle of all information, it seems strange that it can't tell you who owns a given phone number. Before I go, I'll leave you with a final thought and a question. If Google can't do reverse number lookup, then this might be a job for Wolfram-Alpha one of my absolute favorite tools on the Internet. If you currently use a reliable reverse number lookup service even if it's got something like a yearly fee , please post a comment below unless, of course, you're Yegor in Belarus and let us all know.
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Is There A Google Voice Phone Number Directory? | Best Free Phone Number Lookup
Learn more. Recommended Answer Recommended Answers 1. Gold Product Expert Zanzibar. Recommended Answer. Google only sends your phone number when you make a call, and no other information. Interestingly enough, I looked up my number I ported to Google Voice in another reverse-lookup search, and it still showed my name, and my old carrier Sprint , but that is just because whatever database they use hasn't been updated.
When I look-up my originally assigned Google Voice number, it gives no information whatsoever. Original Poster. Charles Barstow. All Replies 2. Emily Beglin. Is it possible to get Google to change the backend carrier from Bandwidth? I am using a new messaging software and they cannot work with Bandwidth because of it's limitations.
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However, I don't know how to reach GV to see if they will change the backend carrier to another carrier other than Bandwidth. This question is locked and replying has been disabled. Discard post? You will lose what you have written so far. Subscribe to updates. Failed to attach file, click here to try again.
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