I'm looking for list of rules that iPhone applies on incoming SMS texts. Here's an example of message I have received:

Example of postal carrier message

The first number in the text is postal tracking number. iPhone thinks it's a phone number and displays it as underlined blue, clickable number. First mistake.

Second blurred number is PIN for package delivery, the number I'm supposed to say when taking the package. iPhone sort of knows this is somewhat important and underlines it. When tapped, I get option to copy the PIN value. Correct behavior.

Third blurred number is driver's phone number. In case I'm unavailable at destination address, I can call them up and tell them to come elsewhere or at different time. Notice the missing space after every sentence. iPhone didn't recognize this number and I have no way to copy this number and call it. iPhone only allows me to copy the entire message text, not portion of it. If I receive this text in traffic, I am in no position to fiddle with my phone while driving, so I just ignore the text and miss the package.

If no list of rules is available, how should the carrier format their SMS texts, so that iPhone correctly recognizes every piece of information in them?

  • Can you not tell Siri to call the number you dictate, then simply read it out?
    – Cass Lopez
    Aug 7 at 17:41
  • What are you trying to do? The data detectors are very likely localized so this might be a massive matrix with dozens and dozens of locales and a handful of iOS versions ( and that’s best case assuming things don’t change in dot releases of the os or rules get pushed server side…)
    – bmike
    Aug 7 at 17:47

Is that number directly diallable without a leading zero? It looks like only 9 digits, which certainly wouldn't work in the UK (& I always thought the UK & EU synchronised systems a long time ago).

I expect phone numbers to be either within the same country 01234 567 890 with the leading zero, 11 digits total, or the international equivalent [which still works from 'home'] +44 1234 567 890 i.e. 12 digits, including +2-digit country code, minus the leading zero. From a mobile phone, they are the only two dialling schemes possible [other than some very specific numbers, emergency etc.]

When mobiles became popular, the UK abandoned the "local" phone number scheme entirely with shorter dialling for local areas for land lines, and mobile phones must always use the entire 11 or 12 digit dialling system, even if ringing the same town.

  • Yes, that number can be called directly. In my country, that is Czech Republic, we used to have leading zeros, I think this was in nineties or so. With EU came unification of phone numbers and leading zeros were removed. The only other rule I can think of is the prefixes for landlines and mobile numbers. Landlines used to be divided by counties and would begin by 49X where X would be the county ID. Mobile numbers had specific prefixes based on carrier, so 603 for T-Mobile, or 773 for Vodafone. But yeah, our phone numbers are 9 digits.
    – masiton
    Jun 30 at 5:51
  • In the UK there are also short numbers that can be used as SMS numbers e.g. 7726 to report spam on Giffgaff
    – mmmmmm
    Jul 29 at 16:43
  • Sure, but none of those are 9 digits, which completely threw me. BTW, 7726 is the national spam number, it's not related to any particular service or provider. It spells spam on a dialler with letters.
    – Tetsujin
    Jul 29 at 16:48

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