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Facebook’s Hello app for Android takes caller ID to the next level

Facebook has launched a new caller ID app for Android smartphones, which aims to provide users with a little more information about who’s on the other end of the blower.

The new Facebook Hello app, which promises to be a darn sight more useful than the failed Facebook Home launcher, will supersede the stock incoming call screen and will provide any details the caller is willing to supply to you on Facebook.

So, even if you don’t have that number saved on your phone, you may see a name, a profile photo, perhaps where the caller works and whether you have any mutual friends. It’ll also tell you if it happens to be the persons birthday, which could get you out of trouble if a friend calls.

The Hello app also enables users to find people and businesses on Facebook and call them in a single tap. Facebook uses the example of a restaurant recommendation where users can find the hours, call to make a reservation and get directions without leaving Hello.

Read more: Facebook Newsfeed to show more content from actual friends

It’s also possible to block unwanted calls using the app. Hello users will be able to block specific numbers through the settings and will automatically divert calls form the worst offenders to your voicemail.

Project manager Andrea Vaccari writes on the Facebook Newsroom blog: “Billions of calls are made everyday on mobile phones and people often have very little information about who’s calling them. Today we are starting to test Hello, a new app built by the Messenger team. Hello connects with Facebook so you can see who’s calling, block unwanted calls and search for people and places.”

When you get a call, Hello will show you info about who’s calling you, even if you don’t have that number saved in your phone. You will only see info that people have already shared with you on Facebook.”

The app is currently being tested in the United States, Brazil and Nigeria, but a roll out in other countries will surely follow.

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