Google announced a slew of updates as part of the first Pixel feature drop yesterday, among them the ability to automatically screen calls from unknown numbers on the Pixel 4. It looks like this option won't stay limited to the latest phone in the lineup for a long time, as Business Insider cites Google saying that it'll "roll out to all Pixel devices with Android 10 over the coming weeks."
Automatic call screening will stop your phone from instantly ringing when you're called by unknown numbers. Instead, it'll redirect them to Google Assistant first. Robocalls are outright blocked, and your phone will only ring when the Assistant identifies the caller as an actual human being. Google will provide you with the transcript of the preceding screening, so you have more information before you pick up.
According to a Phone app teardown in November, you might be able to tweak the feature with a few variables, like blocking only altered numbers, private or hidden numbers, unknown numbers, or numbers matching a spam database Google built. You can also turn off automatic call screening altogether when you're expecting an important unknown call from, say, a recruiter or a potential client.
Interestingly, two of Google's own support pages explicitly state that automatic call screening is limited to the Pixel 4, but that doesn't mean it won't roll out to the other Google devices later. Business Insider didn't state whether or not the feature would be limited to the US, but it's safe to assume so since the regular Call Screen is only available in the country, too.
- Business Insider