BlackBerry 10 Needs Better Call Management Apps

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Screen Shot 2014-04-21 at 2.31.08 PM
The above image shows that the Caller ID API is a feature logged in JIRA but it still isn’t coming.

Almost all of the “call management” apps on BlackBerry 10 are apps that completely block all incoming calls. Why would anyone want that as a feature? Just turn your phone on silent. The whole Call Management category is broken on BlackBerry 10. Some apps, like Call Manager by CSL Limited, have terrible ratings and seem to be lying about the feature set. Doesn’t BlackBerry test feature claims to some extent?

What’s really needed, is a solid call management app that allows you to create block lists as well as lists of contacts that are accepted. It would be great if the call app cross-referenced your contacts and only allowed calls from numbers you recognize. This will of course have to be a headless app, so it can run in the background and not need to be always open.

There used to be some really solid call management apps for BlackBerry back in the legacy days. PrivacyStar was a great app on BlackBerry and the company has completely dropped support for the platform. There doesn’t seem to be anybody in the call management space on BlackBerry 10 anymore.

In the end, it comes down to whether BlackBerry 10 developers can access the phone numbers. Going through the native BlackBerry 10 APIs available to developers, it doesn’t seem like it’s possible. You would have to somehow get the Caller ID, and that doesn’t seem to be a feature. So it looks like this entire app category is killed until the API is available. Considering BlackBerry is going full enterprise, this seems like a good API to make available.