How to Set Your iPhone to Ring Only for Selected Contacts

Alvaro Bernedo

Contacts AlertsHere is a feature that for a lot of users might seem obvious, yet it is not supported by default on the iPhone: Setting your iPhone to alert you only when certain contacts call you, leaving all the rest silent. Up until iOS 5, something like this was almost impossible to achieve, but with the arrival of iOS 6, Apple introduced a feature called Do Not Disturb, of which we’ve already written a bit before and which also allows you to use a small workaround to have your iPhone alert you only when certain contacts call you.

Let’s take a better look at how to do this on your iPhone running iOS 6.

Creating a Custom Contacts Group

The first step in this workaround is to create a custom group of only the contacts you want to receive calls from. Oddly enough though, this is not possible to do on the iPhone’s native Contacts app, so your best bet is to do it either on your Mac or on iCloud’s website.

Important Note: Both of these need you to have iCloud enabled for Contacts on your iPhone for them to work.

On Your Mac

Step 1: Open Contacts on your Mac and select New Group from the File menu at the top of the screen. Then name your new group.

Mac New Group

New group Named

Step 2: Browse across all your contacts within the Contacts app and when you find one that you would like to always receive calls from, just click on it and drag it to the group you just created. Repeat the process for all the contacts you want to receive alerts from when they call you.

New Group Drag

On iCloud’s Website

Step 1: Access the Contacts app via iCloud’s website. There you can add a group of contacts by clicking on the “+” icon at the bottom right of the Groups page.

ICloud Web 1

ICloud Web 2

ICloud Web 3

Step 2: Similarly to how it is done on the Mac, you can add any contact you want to be alerted by when they call you by dragging and dropping them on the group you just created.

ICloud Web 4

Once you are done, the new group you just created and all of its contacts will be ready and waiting for you on your iPhone.

Contact Group 1

On Your iPhone

Now let’s use Do Not Disturb to make your iPhone alert you of calls from only your selected contacts.

Step 1: On you iPhone go to Settings and open the Notifications menu. One there, tap on Do Not Disturb.

Notifications  Do Not Disturb

Step 2: Tap on Allow Calls From and on the next screen tap on the group you just created that has all your important contacts you want to get alerts from when they call you.

Choose Group

Step 3: To enable silent mode for all contacts except those in your newly-created group, turn on Do Not Disturb in the Settings app.

DND ON

Thankfully, once your group is created, you don’t need to go back to your Mac or PC to add contacts to it, since that can be done right from your iPhone. To do so, just head to the Contacts app on your iPhone, tap on Groups and make sure only the group you want to add contacts to is selected.

There you go, now you can rest assured that you will be alerted of calls from only the contacts that are important to you.

Also See
#alerts #contacts

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Alvaro Bernedo

Written By

Alvaro Bernedo

Contributor at Guiding Tech