How to opt out of Google's 'smarter caller ID'

Don't want Google to use your profile photo and name as your caller ID for Android users? We don't blame you. Here's how to disable it.

Jason Cipriani/CNET

Making the rounds today is a report detailing Google's plans to use your verified phone number to display your name and Google+ profile photo as your caller ID. The feature comes as part of Android 4.4 KitKat's smarter caller ID, where it will display business names when a business calls you, should you not have the number stored in your address book.

The plan is to expand beyond businesses and to individuals in early 2014. After the feature is launched, when you call an Android user (running Android 4.4 KitKat) who doesn't have your number in his or her address book, your Google+ profile photo along with your name will be shown.

But as is the case with everything that Google does with our data, the new feature is sure to make a few people feel uncomfortable. Google does allow you to remove your phone number from the service, which you should do sooner rather than later when you're likely to forget all about it.

Screenshot by Jason Cipriani/CNET

By visiting Google.com/settings/phone, you can view all phone numbers linked to your account, and remove any of them from being discoverable by unchecking the box. If you don't currently have a phone number attached to your account, the page will display "No phone numbers associated with this setting" or something similar.

It's easy, and it only takes a few seconds.

What do you think about Google using your photo and name with caller ID for Android devices? Are you going to leave your phone number enabled, or disable it?

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Tech Culture
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Google Android KitKat

Android 4.4 KitKat brings Android to the masses, introduces a minimal design, and puts Google search in your dialer. / Read full review

About the author

Jason Cipriani has been covering mobile technology news for over five years. His work spans from CNET How To and software review sections to WIRED’s Gadget Lab and Fortune.com.

 

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