> Caller ID won't show names for some cellphone callers. I decided to
> ask Bellsouth if their Caller ID would show names of cellphone callers
> with any cellphone carriers, and if so, what carriers.
> So Bellsouth won't tell me what cellphone carriers provide names for
> their Caller ID. Is this information available anywhere?
Only through BellSouth really. The reason is that in order to pass
Caller ID name data, Bellsouth (and other landline phone companies,
for that matter) must either subscribe to a third party database that
can cross reference phone numebrs to their subscriber names, OR
directly negotiate with the various carriers to pass the name
information. Generally, a telecom company (wireless or wireline) will
charge a fee per name that is passed along, while the number-only
information is free.
What frequently happens is that a wireline phone company will decide
they are paying too much for this service (prices typically run $.02
to $.04 per name accessed), and refuse to sign a new contract until
the originating carrier is willing to negotiate a lower price. The
idea is that the wireline company beleives they can strong-arm the
other carrier; if caller id for that carrier is "broken," then they
believe that customers will not want to subscribe to that competing
So in essence, you are right in contacting BellSouth. They have made
a decision not to provide accompanying name data, beacause they don't
want to pay other phone companies for the privelege (yet they're
probably quite happy to charge others for the same info).
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