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Option to leave a message

Discussion in 'Suggestion Box' started by Top Cat, Nov 30, 2012.

  1. Top Cat

    Top Cat Administrator Staff Member

    trueCall Model:
    trueCall Classic + Extra + Recorder
    Country:
    Englishman in Wales!
    It would be useful to me to be able to make taking a message optional.

    Here's the scenario: An automated system rings me up. I have all non-starred incoming calls divert straight to messaging (which is great) so the call centre hangs on the line while the "please leave a message" speech plays waiting to see if someone will pick up, or the automated system starts playing its message at the same time, and then the messaging system records it and leaves me a useless message to screen and delete.

    Suppose it did this: "This line does not accept marketing calls. Anyone else, press 1 now to leave a message." Then I will not be greeted by a flashing red light every evening, because an automated caller will not press 1.
     
  2. Daveb

    Daveb New Member

    I had the problem you describe when I first had my true call. The standard profile is liable to leave you with messages from pre recorded junk calls. I've eliminated these unwanted messages by switching to what's called secure profile. If calling from a blocked, international or typical business number beginning 03, 08, 09, The caller is required to press a number and the number is randomly allocated your particular trueCall - you find out what it is by trying to edit the screening message then it plays it o you. So the message says "if you are friends or family or a wanted caller please press (say) 5". If they do press 5, then your phone rings, and if you don't pick up they get to leave a message.
    I think you are asking for a shortcut to that, but it does serve me very well.
    Had no puzzled people unuble to work out how to get through. I do check the call log for abandoned calls from numbers I recognise but are not starred, but so far none.
     
  3. Top Cat

    Top Cat Administrator Staff Member

    trueCall Model:
    trueCall Classic + Extra + Recorder
    Country:
    Englishman in Wales!
    I don't think we are on the same wavelength.

    My trueCall (classic) is set to pass only whitelist (star-listed) to ring the phone (which then takes a message itself if not answered. All non-whitelist callers get the announcement and the option to leave a message (on the trueCall), but frequently the automated systems do not drop the line soon enough and I get a message logged which is just static (or some pre-recorded marketing speil). 90%+ of the time I spend servicing the trueCall is to screen useless messages and delete them.

    The idea is to continue passing whitelist to the phone, but the blocked calls do not automatically get to leave a message if they hang onto the line - only by pressing an access code. Pressing the access code should not ring through to the phone!
     
  4. Daveb

    Daveb New Member

    OK I am not familiar with the classic.
    I think trueCall repackaged their offers and what I have (Call Blocker, plus optional Call Recorder) may offer different (more) options than classic (for example wildcards in star and hash list), but still not EXACTLY what you are asking for.

    The option you are currently using sounds like what is called "Lockdown " on my box. I don't use it for the very same reason that you don't like it, plus I prefer to add people to my whitelist piecemeal, and that means letting them ring the phone first time anyway. Despite the grand name, "Lockdown" is relatively poor at keeping the riff-raff from filling the message memory!

    Not sure how many profiles are available with the classic, or if you can choose one that is like "Secure" on the call-blocker.

    The "Secure" Option that I now use is very effective (so far 100%) in practice to prevent pre-recorded messages or silent calls going onto answer machine.

    All the same I do agree with you in that no option that actually screens calls with a challenge ("shield") can be set to send calls that pass that challenge straight to answer machine. I think that something like that IS wanted for people suffering nuisance calls or outright harassment, as well as for vulnerable people, in situations where the unwanted caller may be determined enough to pass the challenge of pressing the right key. Also if I was a shift worker I would want to preserve all the call screening stuff as well as sending unexpected calls to the answer machine during my sleep time. So, trueCall , how about adding a lockdown profile with shield ?


    But as I said, my main issue was with salesmen and pre-recorded stuff, and so far in my case not one unwanted caller has bothered to go through the hoops of pressing a digit (Shield), so in fact my phone only rings with people I am at least half expecting, and my messaging light is only flashing with messages I really want to hear. Is this option available to you and have you tried it? Even if not ideal it would be a vast improvement on what you have. I left my box on the "Standard" profile to start with and had the exact same issue with an answer machine full of dross. I soon changed it after a couple of days. I would go so far as saying that the only really useful profile out of the six available IS "Secure". A version of "lockdown" with shield added would double that count to two.


    Dave
     
  5. diabolo

    diabolo Maintainer Staff Member

    trueCall Model:
    trueCall Call Blocker + Recorder
    Country:
    England
    I use the Custom option with these settings. I'd find an option to Shield and take a message useful too.

    [​IMG]
     
  6. Top Cat

    Top Cat Administrator Staff Member

    trueCall Model:
    trueCall Classic + Extra + Recorder
    Country:
    Englishman in Wales!
    There are a lot more options in that list for differentiating call sources than in the Classic, but the handling options amount to the same thing.

    Wild cards are available on the Classic as an upgrade (which I have). In my case I am happy to star callers (if appropriate) after they have left a message. I appreciate the comments and will have another look at my options (easy enough on the web control panel) - I could update to a Blocker (or any other of the versions) easily enough if it gave me what I'm looking for.
     
  7. Top Cat

    Top Cat Administrator Staff Member

    trueCall Model:
    trueCall Classic + Extra + Recorder
    Country:
    Englishman in Wales!
    NB: An intervening post got deleted when a member account was removed by mistake. Sorry - admin

    Nope. I've checked.
     
  8. Daveb

    Daveb New Member

    I looked at the custom settings and resolved to try one of the predefined ones first. I also looked up how the extra features add to the classic, but did not find the original classic user manual to compare with mine.
    In the table you show, does the option to press a button also include "ask name" I wonder?
    On my box all except * or # numbers have to press a key and say their name. * gets straight through and # just gets told to hang up and not call back.

    As a rider to my own comments I do check my call list regularly in case my settings have caused a wanted caller to abandon. I think that risk is high if there is too much put in the way of callers actually ringing your phone.
     
  9. Top Cat

    Top Cat Administrator Staff Member

    trueCall Model:
    trueCall Classic + Extra + Recorder
    Country:
    Englishman in Wales!
    True, but as I mention in Introductions my mobile is my main point of contact. I don't want to not take messages in case I get a legit call not on the star list, but I do want to filter out the messages taken only because the line isn't dropped in time.

    I could do with a trueCall function on my mobile, but it's not a huge problem.
     
  10. Daveb

    Daveb New Member

    It all shows that this box is doing what the phone network really ought to be able to do. Then you can define a rule to divert to mobile in defined circumstances. Indeed the whole thing starts to look a lot like a firewall with block, accept, divert rules. It would also be nice to get SMS alert that a message is waiting, but not essential as you can get round it. My box does a weblink after each message so I can see on iPhone that a message has been left, when, how long and who from. And yes, let's have a trueCall function on mobiles ( we can dream I guess).
    Dave
     
  11. Top Cat

    Top Cat Administrator Staff Member

    trueCall Model:
    trueCall Classic + Extra + Recorder
    Country:
    Englishman in Wales!
    Smart phones ought to be able to do it with an app (not that I use a smart phone).
     
  12. Daveb

    Daveb New Member

    That was my first thought, but I am torn between what is a good idea and a concern to avoid hijacking of the basic phone functions by a rogue or malfunctioning app. I am not entirely sure it can be done as a smartphone is really just a phone and an internet box and a computer glued together. Not sure that the necessary pathways between functions exist. On the whole I would opt for keeping the phone functions separate. I am becoming more confirmed in my view that the whole function of the true call should be built into the network. That it isn't gives trueCall a nice business but leaves mobiles uncatered for.
     
  13. Top Cat

    Top Cat Administrator Staff Member

    trueCall Model:
    trueCall Classic + Extra + Recorder
    Country:
    Englishman in Wales!
    I'm not sure about that. One hears of "viruses" capable of dialling out silently.
     
  14. Daveb

    Daveb New Member

    I was wrong in my rash statement about there possibly being insufficient links to allow apps to use the phone. A quick browse of the internet reveals lots of programming advice on the subject. Wisely Apple disables the ability to dial * or # using the API.
    Apps exist to reject or send calls to voicemail depending on who they are, or where you are, or both; also iOS 6 allows you slightly more nuanced options to manually answering or rejecting calls. Mind you I haven't seen any good reviews yet! This must depend on the network too as that is where your voicemail box is. Fair to say though if you are looking for what the branding people call a "seamless experience" between mobile and house phone, there is a way to go (or a price to pay - see below**)!
    Whatever one thinks of Apple's "walled garden", compared with the "bazaar" of Android, at least it SHOULD put a brake on rogue apps.
    Meanwhile, I am getting to quite like the tireless receptionist in my trueCall box. It's also dramatically cheaper than using something like a hosted virtual call handling service. And that is even when you allow for trueCall charging £20 pa for continued use of the web link.
    **[hosted virtual call handling service]: With a system like this you do get your phones (mobile and landline) and message boxes integrated, but the devil is in the detail, namely per-minute charges that rack up once you've used up the modest bundled free allowance. Increased costs come from these services being privately hosted, rather than being part of the TelCo network. Plus, the cheapest plan I found (before extra costs) would buy you a new trueCall every year! On this forum I have deliberately omitted the name of the service I found. It's way overkill for a private individual, and probably for many one-person businesses.
     
  15. The Green Hornet

    The Green Hornet New Member

    It doesn't look like it is currently possible to do exactly what you want but you could set it up something similar as follows:

    In Call screening turn on Whisper and set Shield to Shield all unrecognised callers
    In Advanced Options set Shield breakthrough key to 1

    Starred callers will be put through automatically
    Zapped callers will be rejected automatically
    Unrecognised callers will be prompted to press 1 and for those that do will be asked to give their name and the phone will ring. If you don't answer they will be prompted to leave a message.

    This will block out all the pre-recorded messages but the phone will ring for those that press 1 and give their name. Not ideal, but I suppose it depends on what you see as the bigger nuisance.
     

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