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What Is Call Forwarding

A lot of people are familiar with the term "call forwarding" however, there are still a good number of people who are unsure of what it is and what it means. In the simplest terms, call forwarding involves redirecting a phone call to another number. For instance, you could decide to redirect your office calls, which typically go to your office landline, to your personal cell phone, so that you don't miss calls.

More so, there are also several other scenarios where call forwarding can be extremely useful. To give you some quick insight into this interesting call feature, here are a couple of facts about call forwarding:

  • Call forwarding ensures that you no longer miss your important calls. You can easily move back and forth from your office to your home without missing a single call.
  • Many phone plans and network providers in the US, UK, Canada, and Australia offer call forwarding services that allow you to send all your incoming calls to another phone number.
  • Not too long ago, call forwarding was an add-on feature that attracted extra fees on landlines. More recently, this call feature is automatically included in most phone plans.
  • Call forwarding is easy to set up from your Android or Apple phone by simply going to settings and inputting your preferred forwarding phone number.

Now that you have some general knowledge on call forwarding, let’s get into some deeper details about how call forwarding works as well as how to set it up and the different ways you can use it to your advantage.

How does call forwarding work?

As aforementioned, call forwarding involves redirecting calls from one phone number to another. This means that if you set up call forwarding on your office phone number, for example, you'll be able to receive all the calls put through to your office number on your personal phone number.

A forwarded call actually works as two calls, not one. The first call is the incoming call, which the caller places to your number. The second call is the outgoing call, which your phone company then places to the forwarding number that you have picked. These two calls are connected by your phone company so you can speak to the caller.

Additionally, you might sometimes be charged for the second leg of the call, known as the outgoing call, if the forwarding number is not within your phone company’s network. If it is within their network, then it typically should be free of charge.

Also, a lot of people wonder if the forwarded call is connected immediately and if the person who places the call knows that their call is being forwarded to another phone number. Well yes, the person who places the call usually knows that their call is being forwarded for a number of reasons. For the most part, your phone company typically has a pre-recorded message that reads along the lines of “your call is being forwarded”. The caller hears this message and is instantly aware of the call forwarding.

Other phone companies play an "on-hold music" while the call is forwarding, and this alerts the caller to what is happening. Another way the caller could know is that they hear a different ring signal when the forwarding begins. However, whether or not the caller knows that their call is being forwarded does not affect the call coming through to your number.

How do you set up call forwarding on your phone?

Before setting up your call forwarding, you need to know that there are different types of call forwarding. They are as follows.

  • Always forward: This type of call forwarding involves activating the call forwarding feature so that every single call coming in is forwarded to your call forwarding number. This is particularly useful when you don’t want to miss out on any of your important calls, be it work-related or personal.

  • Call forward when unanswered: You can use this type of call forwarding whenever you are busy or not in a position to answer your phone. What this does is redirect any incoming calls to your forwarding number. This call forwarding feature only works on calls that you’ve missed or failed to answer.

  • Call forward when busy: This call forwarding can be used for times when you're busy on your phone, either on a call or doing something else. You can set it up so that any call that comes through when you are busy on your phone is pushed to your call forwarding number.

  • Call forwarding when unreachable: This type of call forwarding ensures that you never miss a call, even when your phone is switched off or if you’re in an area with no network coverage. Activating this on your phone guarantees that all your phone calls will be diverted to your call forwarding number no matter what.

    Now that you know what the different types of call forwarding are, you can now set up your call forwarding. To get this done on an android phone, all you need to do is go to your settings, scroll down until you see ‘more settings’, select that, and choose the option of ‘call forwarding’. You can further choose from a selection comprising ‘always forward’, ‘forward when busy’, ‘forward when unanswered’, or ‘forward when unreachable’. Once you’ve done that, enter your call forwarding phone number.

    If you're using an iPhone, the process is similar. When you open your settings, select the ‘phone’ option, then select ‘call forwarding’. Go on to choose the type of call forwarding you want, and finally, enter your designated call forwarding number.

    Advantages of call forwarding

    There are a couple of reasons why you would want to use the call forwarding feature. Some people forward their calls from their cell phone to another cell phone, while others forward from their office phone to their personal phone. In fact, quite a number of people even use call forwarding from their cell phones to their landline. This is particularly useful as you might simply want to save the battery on your smartphone.

    Another reason people do this is that they may enjoy better network services from their landline compared to their smartphones. Regardless of what the reason is, many people are adopting call forwarding and it comes as no surprise as this call feature has a good number of benefits.

    To start with, it gives you the opportunity to be mobile. While you’re at work, you don’t have to be bound to your office just because you are expecting an important work call. You can head home, go for a break, or even go to the gym without missing a single beat. You can equally rest easy knowing that all your calls can be forwarded to your personal cell phone. A lot of companies enjoy this benefit because it means that they never miss a clients’ call. Someone is always available to pick up their important calls.

    Another advantage of call forwarding is that it encourages remote working. An employee no longer needs to be in the office to receive work calls. This is especially beneficial in times like these where the recent COVID19 outbreak has led to an increase in remote workers. With call forwarding, the office can be empty, yet all-important work-related calls will still be forwarded to the appropriate employees so you don’t have to miss out on any business.

    Other key things to know about call forwarding

    So you’ve got the details about call forwarding, as well as how to set it up from your phone, but here are a couple of other key pieces of information you might benefit from.

    1. Another way to set up call forwarding is through free online-based services. An example of this kind of service is Google Voice. This cloud-based service issues you a phone number that isn’t connected to any network that you can use as your designated call forwarding number. This is particularly ideal for people who run businesses off their personal phones but don’t want to give out their personal phone numbers.

    An internet-based call forwarding service allows you to receive all your business calls without compromising your privacy. This service also allows you to forward calls to more than one cell phone at a time. So if you add any additional employees, they can also receive work-related calls on their phones as well. Furthermore, an online service like this can feature text message forwarding as well, so text messages sent to your number can be forwarded too.

    2. Call forwarding can be disabled. A lot of people worry whether their calls will be forwarded forever, but you can easily disable your call forwarding feature just as easily as you set it up. To deactivate your call forwarding, simply go to your settings and follow through a procedure quite similar to the setup. When you get to the ‘call forwarding’ option in your settings, you can simply click ‘disable’ or ‘turn off’ on your phone.

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