[iPhone] Do a quick reverse phone number lookup with Number Guru

mzl.pxzdniyr.320x480-75Spam calls and cold sales calls are way less of a problem than they used to be a decade ago. That’s partially due to legislation, and partly due to the fact that more people have cell phones today: mobile phones are way easier to ignore calls on than landline phones. All that being said, there are times when you get a constant stream of calls from an unfamiliar number. If you want to know whether these calls are from telemarketers or actual friends, a little app called Number Guru offers a fast reverse lookup service.

What is it and what does it do

Main Functionality

Number Guru is an app that lets you type in a phone number and learn who it belongs to. The whole process takes mere seconds.

Pros

  • Learn who is behind the calls you’ve been getting
  • Phone numbers are assigned a “spam score,” making it easy to tell at a glance whether a number is sketchy or not
  • Support built right in
  • History tab keeps a record of your previous searches: great for establishing call patterns
  • According to their App Store page, this app covers 100% of telemarketers, debt collectors, or 800# numbers…as well as “about 100%” of landlines and 50% of cell phones

Cons

  • Annoying banner ads
  • Lookup info isn’t always as detailed as users might like
  • Verizon Wireless numbers are not included, which seems odd
  • Doesn’t seem to support numbers outside USA

Discussion

mzl.qegtmzxl.320x480-75To test out Number Guru, I decided to feed it the numbers I knew already. For fun, I plugged in my own iPhone number. While my name (or the name on my bill) did not come up, the app did pinpoint my phone number to a nearby city (though not the city my phone was registered in.) It attributed my number to Cingular…but Cingular hasn’t been their operating name is years, which I found a bit odd.

Next, I entered the phone number for a local doctor’s office. The Number Guru got the doctor’s office name correct, though the city was off. Next, I plugged in the number of a known spammer, which I found on an online database of telemarketers and phone spammers. Nothing came up at all, which might mean that the number is no longer in service.

For fun, I tried entering the number of a restaurant in the UK into the service. I got no results, but I wasn’t expecting that the app would do international numbers.

Boasting a solid design, an impressive database (albeit with a few holes here and there), and great support, Number Guru is a frontrunner in its category.

Conclusion and download link

Number Guru is a fast and free way to do a reverse lookup. While the results aren’t always what you might need, the “spam score” and the history functionality make this app a helpful tool to have in your app arsenal. With this app in hand, you’ll know who is calling you, any time.

Price: Free

Version reviewed: 1.1.6

Supported OS: Requires iOS 4.3 or later

Download size: 4.6 MB

Number Guru on Apple App Store

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2 comments

  1. gabriel

    There is an iPhone App that finds out who’s calling you BEFORE you answer the phone…

    Just wanted to inform you about our brand new Utility App for iPhone called RingRing.

    It’s the first iPhone App ever that finds out who’s calling you before you answer the phone (even if the screen is locked via VoiceOver).
    Every time you get a phone call and you don’t know whose number it is, RingRing will automatically look it up for you in the web. Then it will send you a notification (or tell you via VoiceOver/Siri) and thus help you to decide if you should answer the phone call or not.

    In Action: http://www.ringringapp.com

    RingRing will remember your current GPS location by request and assign it to your conversation so that you can actually prove, that you have been at a certain place during a particular phone call.

    Give it a try:

    https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/ringring-whos-calling-me-from/id692710148?mt=8

    And here’s the promo video: http://www.vimeo.com/weblooks/ringring

    I’m the developer, so you can reach me anytime… thank you!

    Cheers

    Gabe

  2. Seamus McSeamus

    I downloaded this a while back, but had never tested it out until I read your review just now. I forgot I had it… old age, and all.

    Anyway, I entered my cell number and wasn’t impressed. As with your test, no name was revealed, and the town was way off. In fact, it was in a different state, although until 9 months ago I did live in that state. But the town was probably 50 miles from where I lived.

    Finally, the carrier was incorrect. It came back as Verizon, but I have been with AT&T for 7 or 8 years now. However, my number was originally a Verizon number that I kept when the switch to AT&T was made, so at least I know why it returned that particular carrier.

    In the end, it leaves me without much confidence in the reliability of the app. It is obviously using a very outdated database for at least part of it’s information.