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Phones forum

General discussion

CORDED TELEPHONES with CALLER I.D.-what is available?

by SunnyRainbowHeart-22780829056502380977778595661914 / January 7, 2010 12:06 AM PST

In addition to the numerous cellular phones I have I don't want to give up my landline. There's always a chance that one loses the cell. phones, they malfunction, the batteries discharge, whatever, so to me there's no substitute for having a landline in addition. I've never seen a cordless that worked well so I'm not interested in cordless.

My question is whether a landline is made which has a built-in caller i.d.? All of the ones I've seen in person and online have only caller i.d. capability, which means that one has to pay the phone company for this feature. All consumers already pay the phone company too much so I really don't want to depend on them for caller i.d.

Years ago I used to have telephones with built-in caller i.d. function independent of the telephone service provider. There were also separate little gadgets which showed caller i.d. but I'd like to have this function incorporated into the phone.

Are built-in caller i.d.s no longer made?

I'm eager to hear your responses.

Discussion is locked
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You may want to do more research.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / January 7, 2010 1:14 AM PST

How caller ID works means that someone has to send you the calling number for the lookup to occur.

To see if you are getting the number, you need a caller id phone to test.

Do that test first before going any further.

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Thank you for your reply, but, sorry, I don't understand it. What do you mean by someone having to "send" me their number and by "look up"?

The landlines I had several years ago didn't require any sending or looking up. If the person had a listed telephone number--whether it was a stranger or someone I knew--his or her number automatically appeared with his name and phone number on my caller i.d. exactly as it was listed in the telephone directory. The only ones which did not appear on my caller i.d. were the ones which were unlisted.

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If you want to learn all about it.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / January 8, 2010 8:44 AM PST

Then it is possible but good old POTS (Plain Old Telephone Service) just rings your line and there is no number sent by the telco so no caller number and yours or the telco won't get a chance to do any id.

More at

Specifically read Operation in that article. So if the telco does not send you SDMF or MDMF then there is no ID possible. And even without that you can have a working Telco service.

I can imagine some that thought it worked without such.

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Here's the skinny
by Pepe7 / January 7, 2010 2:20 AM PST

Let's pretend that you actually found such a device that stored your contacts. There may be an avanced multi-line business phone that stores 100+ numbers. The typical residential model will likely be able to store a lot less (think, speed dial). The people that call you outside of that limited group of pre-stored numbers/names will not show up on your display other than the number they are calling from. In summary, there's really no good way to avoid having to pony up for caller ID on a landline unless only a handful of folks ever call you.

That said, perhaps your local telco may have some sort of reduced 'bundle' package you could look into. Maybe it's not as expensive as you think.

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by SunnyRainbowHeart-22780829056502380977778595661914 / January 7, 2010 12:31 PM PST
In reply to: Here's the skinny

Thank you, Pepe, for your answer but the landline phone I used to have did not depend on my entering and storing those numbers for them to show up. There were strangers accidentally dialing me as a wrong number yet their names and numbers appeared on my caller i.d.

The number and name showing up on my caller i.d. depending not at all on me but on whether or not their number was listed. If it was listed in the telephone directory then it appeared on my caller i.d. exactly as it was listed in the telephone directory.

My caller i.d. had a capacity of how many numbers it could hold just as my answering machine had. All I had to do was periodically delete the automatically stored numbers so the new incoming ones could be listed.

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what you are referring to is...
by Pepe7 / January 7, 2010 10:13 PM PST

...a paid caller ID feature w/ POTS. I used to have it as well before we switched to VoIP. You probably never took a close look at your itemized phone bill to notice the extra charge. See wikipedia-

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Thank you for the clarification, Pepe!

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