Apple’s iOS 12 reporting will allow you to use third-party apps to block spam
Developers of spam tracking applications for iOS can add an app extension called “unwanted communication” and enable it manually in settings to report and block text and calls to a user.
Apple recently unveiled iOS 12, which comes with a number of new features, mainly focusing on performance and stability. Apple did not mention this at the time of its unveiling, but it did include a new feature in iOS 12, first seen by MediaManama, that would eventually allow users to report and / or block spam calls and texts using third-party apps. Developers of such apps will be able to integrate an app extension called “unwanted communication” and to use the feature, a user will need to enable unwanted communication extensions manually in the settings. Also, they will be able to enable only one extension at a time, which translates to using only one spam reporting app at a time.
After enabling unwanted communication extensions, users will be able to report calls by swiping to the left of an item in the recent list and selecting Report. Similarly, text messages can be reported by tapping the Report Message button when viewed in a message transcript. Someone will be able to report with a long press on a message and select additional messages and tap on report messages. Apple explains the functionality of the new feature, “When a user reports an SMS message or call, the system turns on your unwanted communication extension. Your extension collects additional information from the user, before deciding whether to report or block the number … Blocked numbers are added to the device’s blocked contact list. Users can manage this list in the Settings app. Finally, to protect user privacy, the system always deletes the contents of your extension after its extension is closed.
Apple’s move not only brings new features to its customers but also paves the way for the Do Not Disturb (DND) app that the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has released on iOS. The DND app allows users to block unwanted marketing calls, but requires permission to gain full access to their call logs and text messages. Apple has found a middle ground that allows the app to work with a limited amount of data, which the user chooses to provide. However, it remains to be seen whether TRAI will compromise with limited access to user data or force Apple to grant unrestricted access to its apps.