Cloudvox Digits phone number location REST API (eComm 2010)


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"Painless, Free, Open Phone Data": launched , a free REST API & service to find location, carrier, and metadata about any phone number or area code/prefix.

Given at eComm 2010:

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  • Augmented reality is about appending data to one's physical view. This is about augmenting phone numbers with additional context.   Replace human mental effort with lightweight automation and glue.
  • This is a random phone number
  • This is as much data as is available about it for free
  • and here's where that data came from.  Hit the URL, no API key or credentials required.
  • I'm happy to announce the Cloudvox open phone number lookup API,  Take any phone number you care about
  • append it to
  • and if you want a machine-readable answer, append .json
  • We're solving problems that should have been solved years ago.  This data has been way, way harder to access than it should have been.   Cloudvox itself is about letting Web developers, entrepreneurs, and businesspeople access the telecom world with no infrastructure or effort, and this is the same for telecom metadata.
  • I want to finally get phone number info in a form that's so easy to consume that apps  move past showing "naked" numbers The REST API is the first-class feature - can hit /2064445555 or /2064445555.json to get back info about that number.  No key or login needed, and completely free. Because this is ancillary to Cloudvox's business, we aren't trying to make money from it - we just want it to exist
  • I wanted: Free Few or no modifications to my data. If clients have to do a ton of manipulation, it's not worth the time.  Should be query & display in whatever number format or detail level I already have Loose.  Doesn't need to be perfect - not dispatching SWAT teams Anonymous for me.  Don't need to sign up or dink with preferences in my app.  Want to distribute/move my consumers around without screwing with credentials/API keys Anonymous for numbers. Isn't reverse lookup to get a name or something - I don't care about the actual caller's personal info Thoroughly documented. Real code samples I can copy and paste to see it work exactly as described. No attribution required.  it's JSON or DNS, no questions asked Centralized effort.  Where possible, expose more data to me without making me augment again later
  • FREE so I don't have to think twice about using it   PAINLESS so we can all be lazy consumers   OPEN so it's unencumbered and works anonymously
  • I want whatever I can get, but i'm not willing to pay for every query and I'm okay with it not being exact.   Like 1970s Bell vs modern VoIP, this is cheap (free), good enough, and light years better than nothing.   I think this is the mainstream need for phone number data
  • See: - bookmarklet - Google Spreadsheet phoneLocation custom function
  • If an API is built in the forest and no one consumes it, did it really exist? If your web app touches or displays phone numbers, consider integrating this data. If you can't (or want other stuff), let me know
  • Built from the ground up to be integrated by other Web sites/apps - to finally get phone number info in a form that's so easy and accessible (and free) that apps can move past showing phone numbers "naked" with no other data.      Thou shalt loosely couple.
  • Cloudvox Digits phone number location REST API (eComm 2010)

    1. 1. Painless, Free, Open Phone Data Troy Davis @troyd @cloudvox @ifbyphone
    3. 3. 425-210-1234
    4. 5.
    5. 6.   ( White House )
    6. 7.   ( eComm Hotel )
    7. 8. <phone number you care about>
    8. 9. <phone number you care about>
    9. 10. <phone number you care about> <.json>
    10. 13. What I Wanted
    11. 14. FREE + OPEN + PAINLESS
    12. 15. <ul><li>Be lazy in what you send, </li></ul><ul><li>and  liberal in what we accept . </li></ul><ul><ul><li>10, 7, 6, 3 digits </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Already parsed, or best guess </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Same reply format for all queries </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>REST, DNS, browser </li></ul></ul>
    13. 16. Let's Try It
    14. 17. <ul><li>What can I do? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Get realtime number info from existing tools </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Augment phone number displays </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Analyze a group of numbers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Customize call logic </li></ul></ul>
    15. 18. <ul><li>Get realtime number info from existing tools </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Browser bookmarklet </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>XMPP/Google Talk </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Campfire </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Command line </li></ul></ul><ul><li>     ... </li></ul><ul><ul><li><Program or protocol you live in> </li></ul></ul>
    16. 19. <ul><li>Augment phone number displays </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Google Spreadsheets </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Address books </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>CRM </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Mobile apps </li></ul></ul><ul><li>     ... </li></ul><ul><ul><li><App that displays phone numbers> </li></ul></ul>
    17. 20. <ul><li>Analyze a group of numbers </li></ul><ul><ul><li>What US states call my phone app? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Call detail records </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Transaction history (where are SMSes going?) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>      ... </li></ul><ul><ul><li><Collection of hundreds or thousands of numbers> </li></ul></ul>
    18. 21. <ul><li>Customize call logic </li></ul><ul><ul><li>&quot; We've got specials on flights to Seattle &quot; - Adhearsion app to play music-on-hold promo by location </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Route calls to nearest retail location without asking caller </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Infer mobility by carrier name </li></ul></ul>
    19. 22. DNS API host -t TXT
    20. 23. DNS API host -t TXT
    21. 24. <ul><li>What This Needs </li></ul><ul><ul><li>More countries </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Formatting </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Derivative info </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Users, feedback </li></ul></ul>
    22. 25. @cloudvox @ifbyphone Docs & code samples Phone API & Asterisk apps Troy Davis @troyd [email_address]