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Question: Is there a difference between blocking a contact and blocking a number?

iPhone, Apple Watch behavior

Since the Olden Days, I've used a dummy contact, with a silent ringtone and no vibration, to collect numbers from telemarketers, robocallers, and other nuisance numbers. Somewhere along the line I must have further blocked the contact (at least it gives the the option to unblock it). I don't typically just block numbers directly from the Recents list because I'm just used to doing it the old way.

Normally, this works. I check my Recents and if there are calls from these numbers, they show up as from my dummy contact, and I can tell a) they called, b) which number it was, and c) not actually have to worry about it either when the call is made or later.

The other night I got a call from one of these numbers, but it rang (audibly, with haptics) on my Apple Watch, though not on the phone, even though my watch (app) is set for 'mirror my iphone'.

Is this normal behavior? Should I be blocking individual numbers without saving them to a contact? I don't want to turn off notifications generally, or silence/de-vibrate calls on the watch, since I do want to get calls from actual people/contacts. On the other hand, I don't mind learning (from Recents) who is calling, although I guess if blocked numbers didn't get reported as Recents, I could live.

So the questions: If I'm blocking numbers (as opposed to adding them to a blocked contact), do I still get them appearing in my Recents list? And does this change the behavior of my Apple Watch when I receive one of these calls?

iPhone 6s Plus, iOS 11.1, Apple Watch series 3, latest os

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Nov 12, 2017 8:15 AM in response to therealblueteddy In response to therealblueteddy

Hey there, therealblueteddy,

Thanks for stopping by the Apple Support Communities. From your post, I understand that your ringtone settings are not mirroring on your Apple Watch, despite it being set to do so. Specifically, there is a contact on your iPhone that has a silent ringtone on your phone, but that not only played an audible ringtone on your Watch, but also had the haptics with it. I'm happy to help!

Based on the information in Notifications on your Apple Watch - Apple Support from the "Customize or mirror your notification settings", the ringtone settings should automatically mirror on your Apple Watch. What I would suggest as a first step is to make sure those settings haven't inadvertently gotten changed, by following the steps below:

For built-in apps, you can customize the notifications on your Apple Watch:

  1. Open the Apple Watch app on your iPhone.
  2. Tap the My Watch tab, then tap Notifications.
  3. Tap an app. If you want the app's notification settings to mirror settings on your iPhone, tap Mirror my iPhone. If you want to use different notification settings just for your Apple Watch, tap Custom.

For third-party apps, you can turn off notifications. Scroll down to the Mirror iPhone Alerts From section and turn off the setting next to the app.

If the Phone app notifications are set to mirror, but the silent ringtone setting still does not mirror, I would suggest next restarting both your Apple Watch and your iPhone: How to restart your Apple Watch - Apple Support and Restart your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch - Apple Support will walk you through doing that on each device, respectively.

After restarting, monitor the Apple Watch settings until you receive a call from a number listed on that contact again. If it continues not to mirror the setting, the next step I would recommend is to unpair, then repair, your Apple Watch with your iPhone: Unpair your Apple Watch and iPhone - Apple Support and Set up your Apple Watch - Apple Support will take you through that process. When you unpair your Watch, a backup is automatically created on your iPhone, and you can choose to restore it when you go through the setup process again.


Nov 12, 2017 8:15 AM

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User profile for user: therealblueteddy

Question: Is there a difference between blocking a contact and blocking a number?