Say you're on a train to work, but you forgot your headphones. You'd normally listen to music to pass the time, but given the circumstances, your choices are to sit silently like a considerate adult, or to blare songs out of your phone's main speaker like a jerk. Thankfully, there's now a third option.
A new app from developer Usman Farhat uses your phone's earpiece speaker to play audio, and the end result is a subtle, private listening experience. Since this speaker is normally used for phone calls rather than pumping out the jams, it's easy to direct the sound in a way that only you can hear. You can even hold the phone to your ear to make it look like you're on a call when you're listening to your favorite songs.
To try this one out, the first thing you'll need to do is install the app, which is fittingly called Stealth Audio Player.
Next up, just open the app and grant it permission to access your phone's storage so that it can scan your local music library. From there, you'll see a list of all MP3, M4A, OGG, and WAV files that are stored on your device, and there's a search button that helps you find a specific song, artist, or album.
Admittedly, it's a bare-bones interface. There's no playlist feature, no queue, and there isn't a way to sort songs by album, artist, or genre. But this isn't meant to replace your everyday music player — instead, it's one of those apps you keep installed just in case you need it.
Stealth Audio Player serves its niche use case well, though. Once you've selected a song, it'll immediately start playing through your earpiece speaker at a volume that wouldn't be considered rude in any environment. In fact, when you adjust the volume while playing music, you'll notice that the call volume slider comes up, so your music will be no more intrusive than the guy talking on the phone next to you.
If you installed this app to make sure your music never disturbs other people, I applaud you for being considerate — that's a rare trait these days. But if you've found any other interesting uses for this inventive app, we'd love to hear about them in the comment section below.