Back when everyone had a landline, pranking telemarketers was practically an American pastime. Today, on top of the occasional telemarketer, we also have robocalls. Robocalls are computerized auto dialers that deliver a pre-recorded message.
More often than not, these calls are spam and the receiver hangs up.
Ethan Garr, vice president of product at TelTech Systems created the RoboKiller app (iOS, Android). Instead of just blocking the spam call, like most apps do, a RoboKiller Answer bot will answer the phone.
"RoboKiller doesn't just block all these calls, it actually answers them with answer bots which are robots of our own that talk back to the spammers and waste their time," Garr told KTLA Morning News.
The app claims to have more than one million spammers on its list. As bots take the spam calls for you, RoboKiller learns from the calls and updates its block list. The app claims to have more than one million spammers on its block list.
For the user, it could mean a 90 percent reduction in spam calls in 30 days, the company claims.
When a spam call comes in, if you've enabled the answer bot feature in RoboKill, the bot will keep the spammer busy with trivial conversation. You can even pick different bots that say different things.
While the bot is annoying your spammer, RoboKiller records the call and analyzes each unique voice. The app collects all the phone numbers with the same vocal fingerprint and blocks the future unwanted calls.
RoboKiller uses Super Caller ID to tell you who's calling, even if it isn't spam. The app protects against Neighborhood Spoofing, which is when a spam caller modifies the caller ID to make their number look local.
You can also access all the calls that have been blocked or sent through Super Caller ID. You can create your own list of allowed and blocked callers, giving you control back of your phone with a dash of revenge.
RoboKiller if free to download and costs $3 a month, but you can try it free for seven days. It's compatible with Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, Cricket, MetroPCS, and business class C-Spire. The company hopes to expand their product internationally soon.
App reviews are divided, however. Some users say that RoboKiller used to work, but now lets calls slip though. Others say it blocks dozens of calls everyday. Reviews on in the App Store are better than those in the Play Store.
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- The RoboKiller app uses answer bots to answer spam calls for the user. The app takes a vocal fingerprint of the caller and adds them to a block list.
- The app costs $3 a month, but users can try it free for seven days.
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- Almost half of US cellphone calls will be scams by next year, says report (CNET)
- Spam is getting smarter and we're still falling for it (ZDNet)
- Top 5 ways to block spam calls (TechRepublic)