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Caller identification (ID) is a service that lets you to see who is calling you so that you may make an informed decision about whether to answer your phone. It can save you a lot of time, as you can choose to ignore calls from salespeople or others that you do not want to speak to. Choosing the best phone with caller ID involves setting your budget and deciding if you would like any extra features.
Before you look for a phone with caller ID, you need to activate the service through your telephone service provider. Typically, there is a small charge for using this service, although some companies include it as part of a package deal. Call your phone company’s customer service number for more information.
Most phones on the market come equipped with some type of caller ID service, but extra features and prices vary significantly. If you are on a tight budget, a simple corded phone with caller ID that just shows the number, and sometimes the name, is sufficient and typically costs very little. The larger your budget, the more features you can add on. Some phones even offer talking caller ID, so you can hear who is calling from several rooms away. Additional features may include the ability to scan through past calls, and add phone numbers to your address book from the caller ID list.
Wireless home phones cost a little more, but there are still plenty of inexpensive options. If you opt for a wireless phone with caller ID, you will need to decide if you want just one handset or several. If you have a large home, it may be beneficial to look into options that have more than one handset, as you can place them in several different high-traffic areas throughout your house. Multiple handset options range from one extra handset to as many as five or more. Each handset typically has the capabilities to display caller ID information, and they are interchangeable, so you can return them to any base in the system.
It is important to keep in mind that having a phone with caller ID does not guarantee that you will always know who is calling. Some companies, especially collection agencies and telemarketers, choose to block their number, so the caller ID will simply display “blocked” or “unavailable.” Dishonest individuals, such as potential identity thieves, often using a device that makes it look as though they are calling from a reputable company, like a bank. Never give out important identifying information over the phone unless you called the number yourself and know that it belongs to a legitimate company.