When entering a contact's phone number in the Contacts app on iOS or the Address Book on OS X, the number can be labeled iPhone rather than, say, mobile. Does doing so have any effect on how the number is treated by the OS or applications? Or is it provided for purely aesthetic purposes?

3 Answers 3


The iPhone label does not provide any special handling instructions or added features of any kind. It's a purely aesthetic touch that only impacts the display and voice dialing of a contact's number in the same way any other label does, such as "Home", "Work" or "Mobile".

If you are looking for further information on how the iPhone does provide special handling for other iPhones, such as iMessage and FaceTime, there is a great thread, right here on Ask Different, that details just how the iPhone, in conjunction with Apple's servers, uses the UDID and Apple ID associated with the device to provide all those special iOS only features.


It is entirely aesthetic. I think the only difference is that it says iPhone instead of Mobile when a call comes in.


You get unlimited texting iPhone-to-iPhone. Also note that when you text another iPhone the colors are different.

  • 1
    Sorry, you may have misunderstood the question: I was asking about the function of the "iPhone" label that can be applied to phone numbers in the Contacts app, not the behavior of iPhones communicating with one another. And to be accurate, you don't get "unlimited texting" between iPhones; devices running iOS 5.0 will use iMessage instead of texting, when possible.
    – Dan J
    Jan 24, 2012 at 19:19
  • The label is unrelated to whether iMessage engages. You can call a land line iPhone and the OS won't do anything differently with it. It's intended for human consumption only.
    – bmike
    Jun 3, 2012 at 4:17

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