Chapter 3. Phone Calls & FaceTime

With each successive iPhone model, Apple improves the antennas, the circuitry, the speakers, the microphone, and the software. And features like Siri, auto-reply, and Do Not Disturb have turned Apple’s cellphone from an also-ran into one of the most useful gadgets ever to hop onto a cellular network.

Dialing from the Phone App

Suppose you’re in luck. Suppose the dots in the upper-left corner of the iPhone’s screen tell you that you’ve got cellular reception. You’re ready to start a conversation. To make a phone call, open the Phone app like this:

  1. Go Home, if you’re not already there. Press the Home button.

  2. Tap the Phone icon. It’s usually at the bottom of the Home screen. (The tiny circled number in the corner of the Phone icon tells you how many missed calls and voicemail messages you have.)


Using Siri is often faster. You get good results saying things like, “Call Casey Robin’s cell” or “Dial 866–2331.”

Now you’ve arrived in the Phone program. A new row of icons appears at the bottom, representing the four ways of dialing from here:

  • Favorites list. Here’s the iPhone’s version of speed-dial keys: It lists up to 50 people you think you call most frequently. Tap a name to make the call. (Details on building and editing this list begin below.)

  • Recents list. Every call you’ve recently made, answered, missed, or even just dialed appears in this list. Missed callers’ names appear in red lettering, which makes them easy to spot—and easy to call back.

    Tap a ...

Get iPhone: The Missing Manual, 9th Edition now with the O’Reilly learning platform.

O’Reilly members experience books, live events, courses curated by job role, and more from O’Reilly and nearly 200 top publishers.