App Review: PocketPlayer for iPhone

You know when you have your iPhone in your pocket and you want to see what song is playing or use the iPod navigation, you have to take the iPhone out and fumble around? Well a new iPhone app called PocketPlayer seeks to change all that.

PocketPlayer by Gi-Co

PocketPlayer enables truly blind iPhone navigation, at least for the iPod part of your iPhone.

PocketPlayer replaces the typical iPod functions pause, play, forward, back, and volume adjustment with gesture controls. The obvious benefit of this is if your iPhone is in your pocket and you either cannot or do not want to take it out but want to change the song. With PocketPlayer, all you do is put your hand into your pocket, do a gesture on the screen and you’re done!


PocketPlayer supports the following gestures:

  • Double-tap the screen to pause/play
  • Swipe left to right to go to the next song
  • Swipe right to left to restart the current song or go back one song
  • Swipe top to bottom to decrease the volume
  • Swipe bottom to top to increase the volume

The gestures are generally easy to use but will take getting used to. This is especially true when the iPhone is in your pocket, and make sure that you don’t mix up your rights and lefts when using the gesture controls. PocketPlayer also includes a neat “BIBP mode” (Battery and Image Burning Protection) that puts on a black screen so to conserve your LCD and battery life.

The app also comes with a few customization options such as adjusting the touch sensitivity, modifying the background color of the jeans and modifying the player color (mine in the images is called “Black Edition”).


PocketPlayer vs Apple iPhone Headphones

While PocketPlayer is a great app to use with your iPod, I just could not help to realize that the included in-line mic on the iPhone headphones practically replaces all functions of this app. The in-line mic on the iPhone 3G (with atleast 3.0 firmware) for example can do the following:

  • Click once to pause/play
  • Double-click to go to the next song
  • Triple click to restart the current song or go back one song


If you want volume control, you will have to buy the new iPhone headphones or if you have an iPhone 3GS, those headphones are already included. This in-line mic does the following:

  • Click once to pause/play
  • Double-click to go to the next song
  • Triple click to restart the current song or go back one song
  • Click the volume down button once to decrease the volume
  • Click the volume up button once to increase the volume


I would say that an iPhone 3G user with the iPhone 3G in-line mic headphones would partially benefit from the app because of the inclusion of gesture volume controls. However if you are an iPhone 3GS user using the iPhone 3GS in-line mic headphones, that user would not really benefit from this app at all since everything that the app can do can be done from the in-line mic controller. Even the BIBP mode mentioned above can be replaced by simply tapping the sleep/wake button once.

Non-Apple headphone users

The real user benefit with this app is for those users who are not using Apple iPhone headphones or any kind of headphone with an in-line mic for controls. In that case, this app is a fantastic tool and gives you a convenient method to manage your iPod music controls.

Overall, PocketPlayer provides an interesting take on the controls of your iPod music player. The gesture controls work perfectly and the app is convenient if your iPhone is in your pocket or you happen to have headphones that are not the Apple iPhone headphones with the in-line mic. But if you have either the iPhone 3G or iPhone 3GS headphones, PocketPlayer is mostly unnecessary and keeps your hands out of your pocket.

PocketPlayer is scored a 3.5 out of 5.

PocketPlayer is available in the iTunes App Store for $0.99.