Phone Type Updates

This change is live on the staging environment now.

Reasons for Updates
We have identified and worked with multiple integrations to resolve some infinite update loops related to case sensitivity in our phone type fields. We support any string today via the api and uploads for phone_type and have varied data in our system from “mobile” to “Home” to “David’s mom - call at night”. We plan to continue to support any string in this field, but in a way that will eliminate the possibility of infinite loops due to incompatible logic when a practice has multiple integrations enabled.

Our initial change will aim at removing the case from the phone type field. This means the API will continue to accept any string for phone type but it might save and return something different as a response. For example:

  • “home” → “home
  • “HOME” → “home”
  • “homE” → “home”
  • “Home Phone” → “home”
  • “JohN” → “john”
  • “SomethingElse” → “somethingelse”
  • “Call at Night” → “call at night”
  • “David’s mom - call at night” → “david’s mom - call at night”

We are also planning to perform automatic mappings by inferring common types to a cannon type in order to increase type consistency and reduce variation. Automatic mappings will convert to “home”, “mobile”, or “office”. The following list will be used at launch, but may be modified over time as we sample commonly set types by integrations and users.
“h”, ”home”, “home phone” → “home”
“m”, “mobile”, “mobile phone”, “cell”, “cellphone”, “cell phone”, “cellular” → “mobile”
“w”, “work”, “work phone”, “business”, “business phone”, “company”, “company phone” → “office”

Suggestions: Integration Logic
These changes should reduce the variations of phone types we send you. The high majority will be “home”, “mobile”, or “office”. When choosing how to map types between HintOS and your application we strongly suggest you ignore case sensitivity. If your application logic currently enforces PascalCase types this may create an infinite loop between your application and HintOS if you also update the HintOS record as part of this enforcement.

Effective Date
This change will take effect on Wednesday, December 7th, 2022. If your organization needs more time to evaluate the change or has any questions please reply to this email or reach out to [email protected].

While this will address the main pain points we see today while interacting with external services there could still be inconsistencies due to allowing custom types. Here is type list of what what Hint considers cannon types:

  • mobile
  • home
  • office
  • other

Hint will monitor custom types usage and might follow up with more changes in the future, so we encourage all of our partners to stick to those cannon types while communicating with the HintOS API.