Every once in a while you may have to block an unknown or spam number, adding them to your blocked list. But what happens if you have to change your phone or mobile number? Will your blocked numbers transfer to the new phone?
Blocked numbers generally will not transfer to a new phone. The numbers are saved to mobile storage memory and are not transferred to a new phone even when using the same SIM card. Some applications, however, do allow your blocklist to transfer over to a new device.
Since the blocked numbers are stored in your phone’s internal storage, changing the SIM card will not unblock those numbers.
- Do blocked numbers carry over to a new phone?
- Are blocked numbers blocked from your number or your phone?
- Do blocked contacts on WhatsApp transfer to a new phone?
Do blocked numbers carry over to a new phone?
Blocked numbers generally won’t carry over to a new phone as the blocking feature is specific to your device, unless you use a third-party calling app or your device implements Android’s number blocking API. If not, you will need to re-block all the numbers on your new device manually.
The Android development platform provides a content provider API known as BlockNumberProvider for implementing blocked numbers in a cross-device manner.
If number blocking is implemented using this API, blocked numbers are persisted across Android platforms, and blocked numbers will transfer to a new device.
However, this API isn’t commonly used, and number blocking is generally implemented at the app level, making blocklists local to the device and non-transferrable to a new device.
As a result, changing your phone will in most cases unblock the numbers that you blocked. Since the blocklist is stored on the device storage as opposed to the SIM card, changing the phone with the same SIM card will also unblock the numbers that you blocked on your previous device.
Social media number blocking
If you block a contact on an IM or social media app such as WhatsApp, Facebook, Instagram etc, a contact will remain blocked on that social media app even if you switch to a new device, since blocked numbers are stored in the cloud.
Also, if you are using a third-party contact management or caller ID app such as Truecaller for blocking a number, that number will remain blocked if you use the same app and account on a new device.
Number blocking in Google Phone
If you are using Google Phone as the default dialer app, as is the case on Pixel and AndroidOne devices, your blocked number list will be stored in your Google account.
As a result, when switching to a new device, you can easily restore your blocklist to the new device by selecting ‘Restore‘ from your Google account.
Are blocked numbers blocked from your number or your phone?
Number blocking is most commonly implemented on your device, meaning blocked numbers are stored in your device, not on the SIM card.
Blocked numbers can always place a call or send a message to your number via your network carrier, but your Android device will block/hide these calls and messages.
A blocked number will be able to contact you if you insert the same SIM card in a different device.
If you want to block a number from your SIM card or phone number, you can ask your mobile service provider to block the number from your SIM card – using network-based blocking.
If a number is blocked through the network, the number will remain blocked even if you switch to a new device (using the same SIM card) since the blocking is based on your mobile number.
Network-based blocking, however, isn’t common, and your network carrier may or may not offer this service. If not, you’re limited to standard device-based blocking.
Again, device-based blocking means blocking a number using your device’s built-in features. As explained, numbers blocked this way are local to the device.
Do blocked phone numbers expire if my number is reassigned to another user?
Blocked phone numbers do not expire if your number is reassigned to a new user because the blocked contacts are not associated with your phone number.
If you block a number on an IM app such as WhatsApp, on the other hand, if the phone number is reassigned to another user, the number will be unblocked.
In this case, reassigning a phone number to a new user means that a new account is created for a phone number that might have previously been used on WhatsApp. If you change your WhatsApp to a new number, your old number may be reassigned to a new account or user.
What happens to blocked numbers/contacts when you move SIM card to another device
The blocked numbers are independent of the SIM card so moving the SIM card will not change the blocked numbers on your former device, and will not add your current blocklist to your new device.
That said, you may find a different blocklist on the new phone to which you move your SIM card, depending on the numbers that were blocked on the new device (if it hasn’t been reset).
The blocklist is saved to the device storage and is independent of the SIM card you are using. Changing the SIM card or moving your SIM card to a different device will not affect the blocked numbers.
Changing your SIM card to another number will also not affect blocked numbers on your device. You will not be able to receive any messages or calls from a blocked number after changing your SIM card.
Do blocked contacts on WhatsApp transfer to a new phone?
Blocked contacts on WhatsApp will transfer to a new phone if you use the same WhatsApp account on your new phone.
In order to keep your blocked contacts, make sure you don’t delete your Whatsapp account before migrating it to your new device. You must first back up your WhatsApp on your old device before restoring it to the new device:
You must restore your existing WhatsApp account on the new device using a WhatsApp backup stored in your Google drive.
Backup WhatsApp on your existing device
To backup your WhatsApp chats:
- Open your WhatsApp > tap on the three dots on the upper-right corner > ‘Settings’
- Tap ‘Chats’ > ‘Chat backup’
- Select a backup location by tapping ‘Google account’
- Tap ‘Backup’ and wait for the backup to complete
Your WhatsApp will be backed up to your Google Drive.
To restore your WhatsApp account on your new device:
- Move your SIM card to your new phone
- Download and install WhatsApp from the Play Store on your new device
- Open the WhatsApp app > tap ‘Agree to continue’
- Select your country and enter your phone number
- Tap next. WhatsApp will verify your phone number
- Grant the necessary permissions
- WhatsApp will now automatically look for backup
- Select an account to restore data from and wait for restore to complete
Your WhatsApp chats and blocked contacts will be restored to your new device.
Note that if you delete Whatsapp from your phone and then reinstall the app from Play Store, assuming your phone number hasn’t changed, your Whatsapp account will be restored including all your chats and your blocked contacts.
Do the blocked contacts in WhatsApp stay blocked when you change number?
If you change your phone number (new SIM card) on your phone, you will no longer have access to your old Whatsapp account, which is linked to your old phone number.
Therefore, you will no longer see your chats and Whatsapp contacts, including your blocked contacts. You will need to create a new Whatsapp account using your new phone number, add contacts to Whatsapp for the new account, and re-block your undesired contacts.
If, on the other hand, you change your Whatsapp number, all your blocked contact will remain blocked. The reason is that you will simply verify a new phone number for an existing account, but the account will remain unchanged.