How to block a number in Android

Are you sick of strangers calling about your expired auto warranty? Or pretending to be Microsoft calling about detected security threats on your PC? You can silence these annoying voices of nonsense for good by blocking their numbers with just a few quick taps.

This guide shows you how to block a number in Android in various ways. Because Android isn’t visually consistent across all phone manufacturers, we cover the most popular — Samsung, HTC, and LG — along with stock Android 11. We also suggest a few third-party apps if you want a little revenge.

Further reading

Note: Methods for blocking calls will vary slightly based on the version of Android running on your device. Many tutorials exist for every Android device imaginable. Take a gander on YouTube or the XDA Developers Forum to find an option for your specific phone if the following instructions don’t apply to you.

How to block calls on stock Android 11

For people with phones like the Google Pixel 5, which runs a stock version of Android 11, you can easily block a call directly from the Phone app.

From the Phone app’s settings

Step 1: Tap to open the Phone app.

Step 2: Tap the three-dot More Options icon in the top right corner.

Step 3: Tap Settings listed on the drop-down menu.

Step 4: Tap Blocked Numbers (or Call Blocking).

Step 5: Tap Add a Number to add a specific number or tap the Toggle next to Unknown to block all numbers from unidentified callers.

From the Phone app’s call history

From the call history, you can disable incoming calls from specific numbers.

Step 1: Tap to open the Phone app.

Step 2: Tap the three-dot More Options icon in the top right corner.

Step 3: Tap Call History listed on the drop-down menu.

Step 4: Tap on the number you want to block.

Step 5: Tap Block/Report Spam.

Step 6: A pop-up appears with an option to report the number as spam. Tap to uncheck that box if it’s not spam and then tap the Block button.

From the Phone app’s contacts list

If there’s a particularly persistent relative, friend, or ex whose number you’ve saved, blocking them is a cinch.

Step 1: Tap to open the Phone app.

Step 2: Tap the Contacts tab.

Step 4: Tap on the Contact you want to block.

Step 5: Tap the three-dot More Options icon in the top right corner.

Step 6: Tap Block Numbers listed on the drop-down menu.

Step 7: A pop-up appears with an option to report the number as spam. Tap to uncheck that box if it’s not spam and then tap the Block button.

Note: You can also tap Route to Voicemail on the More Options menu if you’d rather keep the number unblocked but don’t want to hear the call ring forever and a day unanswered.

From the Messages app

Android Messages Block Number

Step 1: Tap to open the Messages app.

Step 2: Long press on a message.

Step 3: Tap the Block icon (circle with a line through it) in the upper-right corner.

How to block calls on a Samsung phone

If you have a Samsung Galaxy S20 Plus or another Samsung phone, it’s easy to block unwanted callers.

From the Phone app’s settings

Step 1: Tap to open the Phone app.

Step 2: Tap the three-dot More Options icon in the top right corner.

Step 3: Tap the Settings option on the drop-down menu.

Step 4: Tap Block Numbers.

Step 5: Tap Add Phone Number to add a specific phone number, or tap the toggle next to Block Unknown Callers to block all unknowns.

Note: On this screen, you can remove blocked numbers too, or add a number by tapping the Recents or Contacts button.

From the Phone app’s Recents tab

Step 1: Tap to open the Phone app.

Step 2: Tap the Recents tab at the bottom.

Step 3: Long-press on the number you want to block.

Step 4: Tap the Block icon displayed in the bottom right corner.

From the Phone app’s Contacts tab

Step 1: Tap to open the Phone app.

Step 2: Tap the Contacts tab at the bottom.

Step 3: Long-press on the contact you want to block.

Step 4: Tap the three-dot More Options icon in the top right corner.

Step 5: Tap Block Contact listed on the drop-down menu.

How to block calls on an HTC phone

HTC U12 Life review
Simon Hill/Digital Trends

HTC, much like Samsung, has integrated call blocking on phones like the HTC U12 Plus. Here’s how by using the Phone app:

Use the Phone app’s call history

Step 1: Tap to open the Phone app.

Step 2: Tap the Call History tab.

Step 3: Long-press on the contact or number you want to block.

Step 4: Select Block Contact or Block Caller.

Note: You can see a list of blocked contacts by tapping the three-dot icon in the top right corner when the Call History tab is active. They’re listed under Blocked Contacts.

Use the Messages app

Step 1: Tap to open the Messages app.

Step 2: Long-press on the Contact or Number you want to block.

Step 3: Tap Block Contact.

How to block calls on an LG phone

lg-v60-thinq
Christian de Looper/Digital Trends

Blocking numbers on LG’s handsets is relatively easy, including the LG G8X ThinQ dual-screen phone.

Use the Phone app’s Call Logs tab

Step 1: Tap to open the Phone app.

Step 2: Tap the Call Logs tab.

Step 3: Tap the Info icon displayed next to the contact or number you want to block.

Step 4: Tap Block.

Use the Phone app’s Dial tab

Step 1: Tap the Dial tab.

Step 2: Tap the three-dot Menu icon located in the top right corner.

Step 3: Tap Call Settings.

Step 4: Tap Call Blocking & Decline with Messages.

Step 5: Tap Blocked Numbers.

Step 6: Tap the Add icon.

Step 7: Select one of three options:

  • Contacts — Tap on the Contact you want to block and then tap Done.
  • Call Logs — Tap on the Number you want to block and then tap Done.
  • New Number — Enter the phone number and then tap Block.

Blocking calls with an Android app

If none of the other options suits you, or you just want a more user-friendly way of blocking calls on your phone, a third-party app may be your best bet. However, we do advise reading up on their privacy policies, as some of the most popular free call blocking apps collect and potentially share a lot of information, including your contacts list. Here are a couple of solid options.

Should I Answer?

Should I Answer? is not your average call blocker. It’s able to block specific numbers or all phone numbers except those in your contact list. However, the real hook is its extensive database of known telemarketer, scammer, and premium-rate numbers. When you get a phone call, Should I Answer? shows a brief description and user reviews of the incoming number, plus the option to leave a rating of your own or add the number to a private blocklist.

Should I Answer? also features some of the most robust call-blocking features of any app in its category. It can automatically filter calls from hidden numbers, premium numbers, foreign countries, and numbers below a certain review threshold. Perhaps best of all, the aforementioned features work offline. The app saves a small copy of the ratings database locally. Here’s the privacy policy.

Google Play

RoboKiller

With a robust database of more than 1.1 million spam numbers, RoboKiller will automatically block a lot of spam calls and robocalls. It even has answer bots you can choose that specifically aim to annoy telemarketers, or you can create your own just to be vengeful and snarky. The blocklist updates frequently to keep up with scammers. You can also check blocked calls in your Recent Calls list and even listen to why they were calling. The catch is that RoboKiller is a subscription service. After the seven-day free trial, the app requires a $3/month subscription which isn’t bad for a little peace of mind, and it might be worth it just for the bot feature. Here’s the privacy policy.

Google Play

Contacting your carrier

Most major carriers can block calls. Some only offer this service at a price, so it’s critical to fully check with your specific carrier to fully understand their policy. Others may offer this service for free, but they may have different terms and conditions.

For instance, Verizon offers a free service, as does Sprint. However, Verizon’s free service only allows you to block a maximum of 5 numbers. There’s another catch, too; each number will only remain blocked for 90 days, after which time you will have to block the number again.

If you’re someone who is okay with paying an extra $5 per month, you can permanently block up to 20 contacts through the Verizon Smart Family plan. You also have access to the $3 per month Call Filter feature, which screens incoming calls, auto-blocks spam, and reports unwanted numbers.

Any AT&T who wishes to block an unwanted number or repeated caller can figure out how to do so in the AT&T Call Protect app. If you’re looking for even more features and hands-on call blocking, you can pay an extra $4 per month for the AT&T Call Protect Plus tool. By comparison, T-Mobile typically provides number blocking via their Family Allowances plan for a price of about $5 every month.

More options for blocking calls

Instead of using your provider to block calls, you could check out one of the many third-party call-blocking Android apps. We recommend thoroughly reading each app’s reviews and details before downloading them on your phone, though, because not every app is reliable. Be sure to check out the fine print, which is a good rule of thumb before downloading any new application because many call-blocking apps could directly interfere with antivirus programs on your device. On top of that, many apps can cost you money, even if the price is not explicitly stated initially.

Speaking of Android security apps, you may be in luck if you have already downloaded and installed Avast Mobile Security. That security-based app empowers users and allows them the chance to filter specific calls and SMS messages, as well as block contacts or numbers. It’s likely that your Android smartphone already has some form of call-blocker built-in to the device. If not, we think you can find a compatible app that is trustworthy and reliable when it comes to blocking calls, all with just a bit of digging.

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