The sting of anxiety that comes with an errant phone ring from an unknown number is deeply real and I hate it, so lord help me this apparent new feature of Apple’s next iOS update has me frothing at the mouth.

With the launch of the iPhone 11 comes a brand new version of Apple’s mobile operating platform, available to all iPhone users right now. And with that, a stack of weird, annoying, somewhat useful features.

But chief among them is the frankly genius addition of a feature known simply as “Silence Unknown Callers.”

The feature lives in the general Phone settings, and does exactly what it says on the tin: Banishes all incoming calls from numbers that you do not already know directly to your voicemail.

They won’t wake your phone up, they won’t make it ring, they won’t even appear as a call you can answer. They get funnelled directly to voicemail, and you cop a notification in your recent call history. That’s it.

When the feature’s turned on, the only calls that will wake your phone up will be ones from your saved contacts, ones from your recent outgoing calls list, and ones from Siri Suggestions (i.e. numbers that appear in messages or mail you’ve received).

Make no mistake about it, if you really do not like being pestered by banks/work/scam calls/spam calls/robocalls/basically any kind of call that wants to take money from you, this is a huge day.

It’s also a pretty huge day if you happen to work in the media and really, really, really dislike being cold called by PR reps “just wanting to see if you got my email.”

The feature will be turned off by default (which is good because… y’know… not allĀ unknown calls are bad). So if you’re keen to lock your shit down tight you’ll have to navigate through and do it yourself.

But what a day, I tell you. What a marvellous, marvellous day.

Image: Getty Images / Jason McCawley