The Inn Pt. 8 & The TAPS App

I mentioned once how Jason Hawes and TAPS got together with Fuzzywhite Technology to put out an app for smartphones and iphones that will help you ghost hunt while keeping the cost of equipment down.

I purchased the app just the other day and have used it twice. Once was last night at The Inn, as something happened to me there again.

Typically when I’m hanging out there over night I sit in the same spot in the lobby, because there’s an outlet nearby where I can plug my phone in to charge. I need that, because while I’m there, my phone is my entertainment, whether I’m reading something on my Kindle app, or I’m watching Netflix. Or whatever else.

When I first got there, I noticed right next to the chair I always sit in was a speaker and a stereo system. They use this to play music for kids at certain times of the day to get them to dance and burn some energy. All of the equipment was plugged into a power strip, which was plugged into the outlet where I plug my phone in. The power strip was off. I noticed this, only because when I looked at the power strip I saw no lights. That was what I remembered, not so much the fact that it wasn’t on.

A few hours go by and I started to hear a tiny beep, and it was coming from the speaker. I looked down and saw the power strip lit up. It had been turned on. Not by me, and there was nobody else around that it could have been without me noticing. I told my wife about it and she said to turn it back off, so I did. The beeping stopped. It never came back on.

I decided that would be a good time to use the app, so I put my phone in airplane mode and turned the app on. This was the second time I got to use it. The first time I was just messing around and checking it out.

Here’s my official review of the app. As far as what happened next to me, I got no evidence.

The app comes with a help guide that shows you how to operate everything on the app. Except in order to access that help menu, you have to start a new case (or open an old one) to get inside the app. When it firsts opens, all you get are two links, one to start a new case and one to open an old case.

If you start a new case, you get a form to fill out, which you can skip I guess, or at the very least just name the case, such as the location or whatever. Then you move on from there. That’s when you get to see the three types of equipment the app gives you, and that’s when you get the help link that opens all of the information on the app itself, including a tutorial on how to use it. Seems to me like that might be something that you should be able to open from the main screen.

There’s a learning curve, and you should definitely go through the tutorials to figure out what everything does, or you’ll probably be lost. I was. I also noticed that the app lags quite a bit. That could just be because of my phone, which isn’t the best (it’s supposed to be, but somewhere along the line it turned to crap), but the app is pushing three different recording gadgets at one time, so a lag is to be expected. But, that makes it hard to analyze stuff while in the field, or to get things working. I clicked a button to start recording something, and the button, which all of them are small, didn’t turn on right away, so I wasn’t sure if I clicked it. So I clicked it again. But it was just a lag, so a second later it clicked on, then off, because I had hit it twice. So I fought with that for a few minutes, instead of investigating. Then there’s stuff that looks like buttons but don’t do anything (I don’t think) and are just there for looks, I think…

Then the EVP recorder turned itself on, apparently, while I was trying to figure out the other two things, and neither of them were recording that I could tell. I tried stopping the EVP recorder, and it stopped, then started recording a second file. I felt like I had no control.

Basically, I’m sure if mastered and on a faster phone, it would be a great app, and the three tools it gives you are great things to have. But for my needs, I really only care to have an EMF meter. I have a voice recorder already, and I don’t really care to have a geophone. The good news is, they put out an EMF meter app, and it’s only 99 cents, and I plan to get it.

Aside from that, my other complaints were, the pictures used in the tutorials don’t match what I see on the app, nor do the pictures Jason posted on his website match what’s on the current app. So when looking through the tutorials to figure out how to use the app, I was still a bit confused because I wasn’t looking at what I was trying to learn about.

Lastly, the app crashed a few times on me, and that’s not good. Again, that could be my phone, but I think the app is trying to do quite a bit at one time, and that’s going to push any device hard. On my phone I can’t transfer the app to my SD card, so it’s using space on my phone that I really don’t have, and I’m pretty sure the evidence it’s recording is also being collected on my phone and not my SD card, again, using space I don’t really have.

Overall, this app isn’t for me. I think it’s a great idea, and I trust who put it out, but it’s actually more than what I need. Like I said, I only need the EMF meter, which I will be getting, because the price for all of this stuff can’t be beat.

If I could design a similar product I’d make a few changes, but ultimately they’ve done a great job, and if you’re on the fence about whether or not to try it, it’s only $4.99, so you have nothing to lose by getting it.

It would be nice to be able to use the camera on my phone, or even the camcorder, during an investigation, which I can’t do while using this app. Then again, both my phone’s camera and camcorder aren’t as great as actual cameras or camcorders, so I’d rather stick with the real ones anyway.

Oh yeah, I almost forgot, the EVP recorder records extremely low, and I haven’t figured out if there’s a way to change that or not. But I held the phone in my hand just a foot or two away from my face and did an EVP session. When I played it back, I could just barely hear myself speaking. I’m definitely not going to hear any ghostly voices whispering on it.

That’s my review. If you’re wanting to try it out, do so, and I hope it works out great for you. It just wasn’t for me.

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