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Thread: Will my shadow numbers change if i change my GV number?

  1. #1
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    Will my shadow numbers change if i change my GV number?

    I asked this question over on the Google Voice help forum. I got one answer from an expert that was full of misinformation. Bigger, better crowd here...

    This question is targeted for individuals who have specific knowledge of how Google Voice functions.

    I am no longer part of a small family business that I used my GV number as my contact number. Because of the nature of my parting I do not want to use my GV number anymore, but I don't want it to go away either. My plan is to move it to another google account and then port in a new number to my GV account.

    I use an android phone and a feature phone with google voice. On my feature phone, over the past many years I have collected hundreds of the shadow numbers for my contacts and in many cases it is the only number I have for those individuals.

    If I change my GV number, will the shadow numbers stay they same or will they change?

    i.e are they tied to the account or the number?

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    You might have a hard time finding a reliable/accurate answer for this question.

    I still have many shadow #s saved in my contacts from back when I had a dumb phone and then only extremely expensive data available on my first smartphones. I now have no real phone #s; all of my phone #s are GV #s. So I probably have no need to keep the old GV shadow #s in my contacts, but I guess they aren't hurting anything, and since I don't know what the future might hold, I'm just leaving them alone.

    The following are guesses, and only guesses.

    On one hand, I think that the shadow #s will change, since you plan to change your Google account.

    On the other hand, maybe they will stay the same, since the GV # is staying the same.

    But, since you plan to port in a different # to GV and stop using the original GV #, does it really matter?

    I'm not sure how you ended up with ONLY a GV shadow # for some of your contacts, but you will definitely want to get the real # for those people before you make any changes to your GV # or account.
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    I'm inclined to think it would affect things, because my understanding (with no fully informed inside info) is that for that shadow number to translate to someone's (a recipient's) actual number, it relies on three things: 1. Your Google account identity; 2. The handset in use (must be listed as a linked or forwarded number in GV); 3. The shadow number itself. The shadow number is generated as a product of dialing a recipient from a particular Google Voice account from a linked handset number. If you alter the account or try to use the shadow no. from an unlinked handset it's bound to have a negative effect. That's my theory anyway!

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    I know if you dial a shadow number from a non-verfied number the call will go to whomever the number it actually is. The shadow number for my wife belongs to a guy is Detroit Michigan

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    Yeah, the shadow number only has meaning within the context of your GV account and linked handsets; and further, it only has context based on the original GV account that was used to help generate it.

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    Since it's free to get a Google Voice number for each Google account, you could get another Google Voice number and do some testing with a known number to see if the shadow number changes or stays the same between the two GV numbers.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tfusr19 View Post
    Since it's free to get a Google Voice number for each Google account, you could get another Google Voice number and do some testing with a known number to see if the shadow number changes or stays the same between the two GV numbers.
    Thats a great idea. Thanks

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    Quote Originally Posted by robertjglenn View Post
    My plan is to move it to another google account and then port in a new number to my GV account.
    Is this even possible? I'm not saying it isn't, but I've never heard of anybody who has done it.
    My smartphone is a lot smarter than I am.

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    By “shadow number”, I take it you’re referring to the phone number that GV assigns to the phone number that you’re calling using your GV account.

    You can still call shadow numbers using your new GV # or using any phone number. BUT, the callee is going to see your old GV # as the caller.

    Example:
    Old GV # - 1111
    Callee # - 2222
    Shadow # of Callee = bbbb

    bbbb is associated with both the Callee # and your 1111 GV #.

    If anyone else calls dials bbbb, the callee will see 1111 on her phone as the caller.

    When you get a new GV # and call 2222, you’re going to see a new shadow number assigned to 2222.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Relztrah View Post
    Is this even possible? I'm not saying it isn't, but I've never heard of anybody who has done it.
    Yes. See https://support.google.com/voice/ans...d=1#googlexfer

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    When you change your Google Voice number it will almost certainly change every phantom number. I'll explain in a moment why I say almost certainly.

    First, one correction. Maru's suggestion that if any one else calls a phantom number that it will ring the intended caller is incorrect. It will simply give you a "We could not complete your call. Please try again" recording. All the phantom numbers are owned by Google and used simply as call forwarding numbers.

    Here is how Google Voice phantom numbers work. The first time you call a contact through the GoogleVoice app on your smartphone, it connects by data to Google's servers who supply a 10 digit number as the phantom number for the actual number you are calling. It then has the phone call that phantom number. That number will forward to the intended number ONLY when it is called by a number on your Google Voice account. There could be 10,000 other accounts which use the same phantom number. But, their calls go to the number programmed for their account.

    Every time you call the phantom number from any phone on your same Google Voice account, it will forward to the desired number. It does this by reading the Caller ID from your phone, looking it up in their database of numbers having access to call through Google Voice and cross referencing it with the list of phantom numbers, then forwarding the call to the desired destination.

    The reason I earlier stated that "almost certainly" it would change every Phantom number is that theoretically, it is possible that your new account could be randomly assigned the same phantom number for a certain destination number, but since the numbers are assigned randomly, the probability is about the same as hitting the 100 million dollar lottery!

    One side note. Originally, your phantom numbers were assigned in the area code of your Google Voice number. Now, however, it's really random. The number can be from just about any number in the country.

    Hope that's more clear than muddy!

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    See
    http://www.howardforums.com/showthre...6#post16886396

    robertjglenn basically concluded the same as you that shadow numbers are all GV numbers, etc.

    Quote Originally Posted by TZ617 View Post
    When you change your Google Voice number it will almost certainly change every phantom number. I'll explain in a moment why I say almost certainly.

    First, one correction. Maru's suggestion that if any one else calls a phantom number that it will ring the intended caller is incorrect. It will simply give you a "We could not complete your call. Please try again" recording. All the phantom numbers are owned by Google and used simply as call forwarding numbers.

    Here is how Google Voice phantom numbers work. The first time you call a contact through the GoogleVoice app on your smartphone, it connects by data to Google's servers who supply a 10 digit number as the phantom number for the actual number you are calling. It then has the phone call that phantom number. That number will forward to the intended number ONLY when it is called by a number on your Google Voice account. There could be 10,000 other accounts which use the same phantom number. But, their calls go to the number programmed for their account.

    Every time you call the phantom number from any phone on your same Google Voice account, it will forward to the desired number. It does this by reading the Caller ID from your phone, looking it up in their database of numbers having access to call through Google Voice and cross referencing it with the list of phantom numbers, then forwarding the call to the desired destination.

    The reason I earlier stated that "almost certainly" it would change every Phantom number is that theoretically, it is possible that your new account could be randomly assigned the same phantom number for a certain destination number, but since the numbers are assigned randomly, the probability is about the same as hitting the 100 million dollar lottery!

    One side note. Originally, your phantom numbers were assigned in the area code of your Google Voice number. Now, however, it's really random. The number can be from just about any number in the country.

    Hope that's more clear than muddy!

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    I figured this out. Shadow numbers are tied to the Google Voice number, not the account. Since a person can have two numbers on the same GV account if the shadow numbers were tied to the account then there would be no way to send the correct caller ID for whichever number was selected for the outgoing call.

    Right now I'm using a regular cell phone number to make and take calls and I really miss the features of GV. I wanted to give my GV number to the business because its hard to get customers to change the number they are used to calling, but I don't want to be playing secretary either.

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    Will my shadow numbers change if i change my GV number?

    Quote Originally Posted by TZ617 View Post
    First, one correction. Maru's suggestion that if any one else calls a phantom number that it will ring the intended caller is incorrect. It will simply give you a "We could not complete your call. Please try again" recording. All the phantom numbers are owned by Google and used simply as call forwarding numbers.
    Then they may have changed their procedure. This was true when I tested it before (forgot how many years ago*). When I called a “shadow phone number” using other people’s phones, the caller ID that appeared on the callee’s phone was my GV number.

    *I think this was way back when GV still allowed SMS to international numbers. I actually have shadow numbers for several international numbers. They don’t work anymore, of course.

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    Quote Originally Posted by robertjglenn View Post
    I figured this out. Shadow numbers are tied to the Google Voice number, not the account. Since a person can have two numbers on the same GV account if the shadow numbers were tied to the account then there would be no way to send the correct caller ID for whichever number was selected for the outgoing call.

    Right now I'm using a regular cell phone number to make and take calls and I really miss the features of GV. I wanted to give my GV number to the business because its hard to get customers to change the number they are used to calling, but I don't want to be playing secretary either.
    Make sure you immediately change the default GV voicemail greeting or your customers will hear “...Google Voice...”.

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