TaCode Tuesdays: Create a Simple Custom Caller ID App to Mask Your Personal Number

Posted by Pedram Mohammadi on August 2, 2016

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Welcome back to TaCode Tuesdays! This is the only place you can find snippets of code for use in your very own text/voice apps, along with a weekly dose of taco puns. I’m a developer here at Zang and not only am I a big fan of tacos (if that wasn’t already apparent), I’m also a fan of open source. My goal is to share a new app idea each week that you're free to use “as is” or modify and use as the basis for your next app—no coding ability required.

Last week I wrapped up our a series called “8 Simple Ways You Can Use SMS And Voice,” which is, of course, part of our “TaCode Tuesdays” feature. In case you missed the final instalment, check out last week’s post for an outline of 2 different apps, and if you’d like to learn how to get started on Zang, take a look at our very first post.

This week I’m going to focus on a ‘custom caller ID’ app. This will enable you to place a call without exposing your own private, personal number. A super-useful app if you’re still in the ‘dating game’ or just don’t want customers calling your cell phone while you’re sitting down for dinner (read: tacos).

Before I move on to the app, here’s your taco tip for the week:

Try tacos for breakfast...yeah, that’s it—simple but, life changing!

Let’s Taco ’Bout the Apps

I’ll break up the app into three pieces of code, each will require a separate Inbound XML document that can easily be created using Zang. You’ll also need to have a Zang number (enabled for voice) in order for the app to work. If you’d like to learn how to set up those documents and your Zang number, check out our first ever post.

So, before we start, here’s how the app works:

  1. You place a call into your Zang number
  2. You'll then be prompted to enter a custom 'Caller ID' — the number that you'd like to appear on the person's phone 
  3. The call is then connected, masking your personal number for the one you entered in step 2.

Below is the code, again, broken up into 3 separate parts that each require a separate document. It’s also important to note that the order you create the docs in can be reversed from the sequence that I provide...whatever’s easier for you!

The first document receives your own call, for simplicity let's call it “Custom Caller ID - Part 1”.

[CODE 1]

[/CODE 1]

Save this document, but keep it open in another tab because we’ll be coming right back to add the Public URL of the next document we’ll be creating. Next, let’s create document #2 or “Custom Caller ID - Part 2”—this is the part of the app that enables you to enter your desired caller ID.

[CODE 2]

[/CODE 2]

Now that your second document is created, go back to your first document, entitled “Customer Caller ID - Part 1” and add the missing Public URL from the doc you just made (found just above the editor or the part where you pasted the code).

Keep the 2nd document open in another tab, once we’ve created the next document, which we’ll call “Customer Caller ID - Part 3”, we’ll need to copy its Public URL and add it to the 2nd doc. Anyways, let’s create the 3rd doc “Customer Caller ID - Part 3”—the part of the app that places your call.

[CODE 3]

[/CODE 3]

Now with the 3rd doc created, copy its Public URL into the 2nd doc, entitled “Customer Caller ID - Part 2”. Once you’ve saved, you’re all set—you should have 3 complete documents and there’s only one more step.

You’ll have to add the Public URL of the first doc, the one we called “Customer Caller ID - Part 1” to “Voice Settings” under “Manage Numbers.” Here you’ll see your Zang number(s). Click on the one you want to assign the app.

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Now paste the Public URL for “Customer Caller ID - Part 1” under “Voice Request URL.” Then save and you’re done.

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That’s it for this week! If you have any thoughts about the apps or just want to share your own taco-related thoughts, you can comment below. If you want a reminder, sign up to get notifications of new blog posts. I’ll be back next week with a new post of “TaCode Tuesday,” where I’ll be highlighting even more free code and apps.

Topics: Communication Apps, Ideas, TaCode Tuesday, cPaaS

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