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Taiwanese app offers fast caller ID service for iPhone iOS 10

Taiwanese app developer Whoscall announced it has upgraded its functions for iPhone’s iOS 10 operating system to provide caller identification services.

The upgraded app will feature "instant" caller identification and number blocking for iOS 10, which Apple has released in beta form. The app lets users of the newest iPhone operating system add callers to a blacklist and later undo blacklisted numbers if needed.

Whoscall will also be able to screen for telemarketing numbers and calls from scammers. It can identify the numbers of government organizations, banks, hospitals and other types of business.

Whosecall's iOS 10 app gives users access to a database of more than 100,000 numbers, a leap from the 2,000-number limit in the app's first version.

Users can download the database by turning on the Caller ID lookup feature through a "blocking and identification" function under the iPhone's settings.

Previously, call-blocking apps including Whoscall were available only through Apple's App stores. They required users to open contact lists and the app at the same time for verifying caller identity, reported Engadget.

iOS once trailed Google Android smartphones in call-blocking features because Apple had not opened its caller identification system to third-party app databases until the start of its developer framework CallKit in June, according to TechNews.

CallKit lets voice over Internet protocol (VOIP) developers integrate apps with iPhone interface to streamline use of the built-in Phone app.

In its latest app, Whoscall required users to import its phone number database into phone contact lists so the identification process would work. But that process was considered inconvenient and disruptive to contact list information, the Apple Daily in Taiwan reported.

The updated app allows users further to download and save the database on the iPhone offline. They might tap the app itself just to check for caller identification database changes.

Whoscall is a 6-year-old caller ID and telephone number management app developed by Gogolook, which is a division of the Korean IT company NHN.

Whoscall currently has identified 700 million phone numbers in 11 countries. The database is particularly up to date in the United States, Brazil, Japan, Thailand, South Korea and Taiwan.

Taiwanese caller identification app developers are now collaborating with government and private agencies to expand those lists of numbers.

The U.S. Federal Communications Commission is on board along with the Korea Internet & Security Agency, the Hong Kong spam database, and the National Police Agency in Taiwan.