Call Forwarding

iPhone: The Missing Manual, Second Edition book cover

This tip is from iPhone: The Missing Manual, Second Edition. Teeming with high-quality color graphics and filled with humor, tips, tricks, and surprises, iPhone: The Missing Manual quickly teaches you how to set up, accessorize, and troubleshoot your iPhone. Instead of fumbling around, take advantage of this device with the manual that should have been in the box.

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Here's a pretty cool feature you may not even have known you had. It lets you route all calls made to your iPhone number to a different number. How is this useful? Let us count the ways:

  • When you're home. You can have your cellphone's calls ring your home number, so you can use any extension in the house, and so you don't miss any calls while the iPhone is turned off or charging.

  • When you send your iPhone to Apple for battery replacement (page 346), you can forward the calls you would have missed to your home or work phone number.

  • When you're overseas, you can forward the number to one of the Web- based services that answers your voicemail and sends it to you as an email attachment (like or

  • When you're going to be in a place with little or no AT&T cell coverage (Alaska, say), you can have your calls forwarded to your hotel or a friend's cellphone. (Forwarded calls eat up your allotment of minutes, though.)

Call Forwarding Screenshot

You have to turn on Call Forwarding while you're still in an area with AT&T coverage. Start at the Home screen. Tap Settings->Phone->Call Forwarding, turn Call Forwarding on, and then tap in the new phone number. That's all there is to it-your iPhone will no longer ring.

At least not until you turn the same switch off again.

Next »


Yeah, it would be a LOT handier if it didn't cost you air minutes. We had about twenty minutes left one month and thought forwarding would keep us from going over. Boy, were we wrong. Ouch.

"Tip & Trick" implies that there is a savings in time or effort or cost. Call forwarding should not be classified as either tip or trick.

The call forwarding provided by the iphone only gives you a fraction of the options provided by the carrier. Here are the dial-in codes to make use of all of them.... this is the stuff that should be in a 'missing manual':

[dest] - 10 digit nr. you want to forward to
[sec] - time to no answer in 5 secs. 1-5

Before you make any changes, do a status check and write down your ORIGINAL voicemail number, so you can set it back to where you need it.

Forward All:
Activate: *21*[dest]*11#
Cancel & Retain: #21*11#
Re-establish: *21*11#
Cancel & Forget: ##21*11#
Status: *#21*11#

If Busy:
Activate: *67*[dest]*11#
Cancel & Retain: #67*11#
Re-establish: *67*11#
Cancel & Forget: ##67*11#
Status: *#67*11#

if no answer:
Activate: *61*[dest]*11*[sec]#
Cancel & Retain: #61*11#
Re-establish: *61*11#
Cancel & Forget: ##61*11#
Status: *#61*11#

If Unreachable:
Activate: *62*[dest]*11#
Cancel & Retain: #62*11#
Re-establish: *62*11#
Cancel & Forget: ##62*11#
Status: *#62*11#

Thanks samiam, just what i was after!

You can use "Call forward" app from appstore.Generates fake contacts, but you can pick from contact list and set up separate forwarding for no reply, busy, out of reach situation.

We used the Call Forwarding in the iphone (ATT) succesfully in the US - however this does not seem to work when you go OUTSIDE the US. Does any one have good ideas or solutions ? Thanks Balaji

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