Back to the Home Page

Send Me an E-Mail

Back To The Lbrary

Back to the Volume 3 Index

Volume Three - What Are The Best Apps For My Phone?

This question comes up all the time in discussion groups. Let's settle this once and for all.

The answer is "None Of The Above!"
Continue Reading for an explanation

    Of course I am aware that the term "Apps" is very general and could mean any program you run on your device. Some might be useful so it becomes important to separate them based on their intent. We wil break them down according to what each requires of the phone itself and consider whether or not the hone has the hardware to support it. We'll take a look at one we mentioned earlier, the Phone camera. At that time we found several limitations in the camera, mostly related to its small size and short focal length Just how much does this limit the phone? Let's look at a typical phone camera.

    The important point to notice here is the size of the lens and the lack of distance between the back of the camera and the lens. There is not much space separating them which limits the ability of the camera to focus any image. The focal length is very short. Compare that to what a larger camera has to work with and the limitation factor becomes something to be concerned about. The amount of light that a small lens can admit to its imager is very low. And to make matters even worse, often investigators take their cameras into areas where light is limited under the best of conditions. This is why the phone is not recommended as a camera for gathering evidence. Camera manufacturers are aware of these limitations as well which is why some phones now have multiple cameras to try to compensate for these issues. They add the output of multiple cameras electronically to spread the demands over different cameras to form a single image. That does help, but its better to not have do a lot of this additional work if by simply using a larger camera lens it's not required.

    Phone Apps also are available that allow the phone to be used as a recorder. Such use was mentioned elsewhere in the topic on Audio recorders. That article also established certain minimum specifications related to the recorder that was required to properly record an audio stream without compromising the bandwidth. Phones do not record in stereo, they compress audio files, and have insufficient sample rates to ensure undistorted digital files. It was determined when all factors were considered a phone could only be used for event logging or witness interviews, but never for EVP or evidence recording. This rules out phones as audio evidence recorders.

    The next kind of app many use are intended to detect spirits in some way. They claim to either detect a spirit or in some way communicate with them. For that the phone needs a means of sensing a spirit or ghost. So what sensor does the phone have that is designed to do this task?

    Many imquire about using phone apps instead of Spirit Boxes. Since the use of methods which create pareidolia are flawed anyway, it would seem that it wouldn't make much difference. Instead of using a real spirit box which provides flawed data, now you will be getting your flawed data from a device that is known to fail when used in thhis manner. What could possibly go wrong with that?

    Now lets examine the hardware in the phone itself. The ways the sensors are used varies between phones; Most phones have an accelerometer which can determine changes in the phone's position as well as the rate of change, a proximity sensor that determines if the phone is near any object. It has a range of about 2 inches and detects when you place the phone near your ear. They also have a magnetometer which detects any magnetic field variations as well as the Earth's magnetic field. Phones also detect ambient light which can be used to brighten / darken the display. In addition they receive radio transmissions from Blue tooth, WiFi, as well as the wireless network (4G, 5G). Aside from these, phones also have microphones that pick up your voice when you speak. If a spirit intends to interface with a phone it must use something the phone has available and can process.

    Any phone app that claims to open the phone up to spirits requires the spirit use one of these methods the phone is capable of receiving. Which also means that those who support the use of phone apps for this purpose should be able to explain exactly how the spirit acomplishes this action. (So far I don't know of any phone that comes with a sensor called a "Spirit Detector".)

    Is There A Way A Spirit Might Use A Sensor Already In The Phone ?

    To answer that, let's look at what each of these sensors actually do detect:

      Accelerometer - This is a device that detects movement. It is how your phone senses when it is turned, picked up, or moved. Software can determine the range of motion as well as compare that to its previous position.
      Gyroscope - This sensor works in conjunction with the accelerometer at detecting movement of the phone. It "remembers" the previous position of the phone and is used to compare that reference with the new position of the phone when movement occurs.
      Proximity Sensor - This consists of an LED and an IR detector that senses when the phone is near an object, like your head when you pick up the phone and are holding it to your ear. It turns off the display under those conditions to conserve battery life. It also prevents the light from the display from distracting your vision by shining into your eyes.
      Magnetometer - This sensor detects the Earth's magnetic field and any variations in surrounding fields. It is used as a compass for apps requiring that data.
      Ambient Light Sensor - As the light level varies between day and night or indoors versus outdoors, this sensor can adjust the screen light level as needed to suit the current situation.
      Temperature and Humidity sensors- Most phones have temperature sensors to detect if the phone needs to shut down to protect itself if conditions becoome too hot. Humidity sensors are not on all phones, but those that have them make this data available for any apps that require them.
      Barometer - Measures the barometric pressure and makes this available to any apps requiring that data. This is not on all phones, usually only on top of the line versions.
      Microphone - This picks up sound, usually your voice. And while we are referring to it, cell phone standards set its frequency response range between 300 Hz and 3.4 KHz. This is bare minimum for speech and insufficient for EVP work.

    In addition to the sensors, the phone also has several RF receivers that can be used to access it. These can carry data which is integrated into what its sensors detect to allow various other apps on the phone to function. The function and its associated band are as follows:

      WiFi - Allows for connectivity with other digital devices - (2.4 GHz or 5GHz.)
      Bluetooth - Allows the phone to interact with various stand-alone devices - (2.4 GHz )
      GPS Receiver - Obtains positioning data from satellites to obtain the location of phone - ( 1.575 and 1.227 GHz )
      Cell Phone Frequecy Bands - These vary between carriers and whether or not the phone is 4G or 5G. As a rule three bands are covered, Low Band - 600 - 850 MHz; Mid Band - 1.7 - 2.5 Ghz; High Band 3.5 - 5.2 Ghz.
      In addition, if 5G is available it includes the above plus 3.5 and 5.2 Ghz bands.

    This data covers the only way a spirit or anything else can interact with your phone. Any apps MUST utilize one of these sources in order to function. That means that the use of your phone as any kind of Spirit Box or Detector assumes the spirit can generate the proper signal source to be picked up either by the physical sensors or as a signal it generates to one of the RF receivers. Until someone can demonstrate exactly how a spirit might accomplish this requirement the use of ALL Spirt Detecting Apps or EVP Apps for phones must be considered useless.

    Do Any Phone Apps Work? Is there Any I CAN Use?

    The answer to that is YES...But... First the yes. Ghost apps are a waste of time as mentioned earlier. There is no proof that spirits can in any way influence a phone or any other device. So even though the phone does have sensors for EMF, if a spirit lacks an ability to create or alter such a field, what good is that sensor? And whether you use a real Spirit Box or a Phone App that mimics one, the idea of variations on the Ghost Box is still a useless concept. As a recorder the phone does not have sufficient bandwidth to properly record audio for EVP work so that rules out those apps. And besides that, phones use a single microphone, not two, and as such do not do recordings in stereo. On the other hand phones do provide an ability to communicate. Any app that utilizes that aspect of the phone could be useful. (Contacts, messaging, etc.) Any app that uses the phone as an EMF detector might have limited use, however the fact that its reception only covers a portion of the spectrum may limit its effectiveness in that area somewhat since portions of the spectrum are not received. Another way a phone can help out is anything related to its use of GPS to pinpoint your locationl. Those apps may in fact be useful.

    Now for the big "BUT...". All phones have various digital functions going on anytime they are running. This is a source of EMF intereference that may contribute to false positives with your other equipment. For this reason phones should be turned completely OFF while any investigation is underway. Puting them in "Airplane Mode" does not ensure the chance of RF is removed. Phones use switching regulators to provide power internally and by nature these can introduce RF radiation. Likewise the clocks and data switching by the processor may create interference as well. You can test your phone yourself, simply place it beside your EMF meter and see if it causes a response. If it does, it has potential to ruin your investigation. Even though the phone may be used for some applications, this fact alone means it should be turned off when investigating even though the app itself may be fine. Imagine if your team each had their own phones, carrying them around as you investigate. You have mobil sources for interference never quite knowing when one will pop up as a member of your team walks into the room. Do yourself a favor, just leave the phone at home or at least back in the car.

    Back to the TOP of this page

    © May 2024 - J Brown