Is there any noise cancellation app for Android?

Noise cancellation is a technology that actively reduces unwanted ambient sounds. It works by using built-in microphones to analyze incoming external noise and then generate an inverse “anti-noise” wave that cancels it out before it reaches the ears. This allows the desired audio signal to be heard clearly without being masked by background noise.

In recent years, noise cancelling headphones have become increasingly popular, especially among frequent travelers and those who work in noisy environments. The ability to block out external noise allows listeners to fully immerse themselves in their music or audio material. According to recent industry analysis, the global market for noise cancelling headphones is projected to reach $4 billion by 2025.

While over-ear and in-ear noise cancelling headphones provide an effective audio solution, they can be bulky or uncomfortable for continuous wear. Noise cancellation apps offer a convenient alternative by using a smartphone’s built-in microphone to achieve a similar muting effect on ambient sounds. These apps have grown in popularity and availability alongside the proliferation of smartphones. They provide customizable noise reduction that can make voice calls, music, videos, and other audio clearer and more audible in loud environments.

How Noise Cancellation Apps Work

Noise cancellation apps utilize advanced digital signal processing algorithms to analyze ambient background noise and generate an inverted sound wave that actively cancels it out (Source). This technology works in real-time to detect and subtract unwanted noises, resulting in a cleaner audio signal.

There are two main types of noise cancellation: active and passive. Active noise cancellation uses digital technology to analyze sound and generate an inverted wave. Passive noise cancellation relies on physical barriers and absorption materials to block noise. Noise cancellation apps utilize active noise cancellation powered by software algorithms (Source).

Noise cancellation should not be confused with noise isolation. Noise isolation prevents outside noise from entering the ear space using tightly-sealed earphones or headphones. It blocks sound waves physically. Noise cancellation analyzes incoming sound digitally and takes action to cancel it out. Apps that offer both isolation and active cancellation provide the most effective background noise reduction.

Top Noise Cancellation Apps for Android

There are a few excellent noise cancellation apps available for Android devices that can help block out distractions and create a more peaceful environment.

1. Krisp

Krisp is one of the most popular and highly-rated noise cancellation apps. It uses AI technology to detect ambient sounds and cancel them out in real time. Krisp works great for blocking out background noise on calls, in noisy offices, on public transportation, and other loud environments. The app offers a free trial version along with premium paid subscription plans.

2. Noiseinator

Noiseinator takes a different approach by playing soothing background sounds to mask distracting noises. You can choose from over 25 ambient sounds like waves, rain, campfires, and more. The app also has a noise meter to measure decibel levels and a basic noise cancellation feature.

3. Sonarworks Sound

Designed with audiophiles in mind, Sonarworks Sound has a more robust noise cancellation system optimized for use with headphones. It features customized sound profiles based on your specific headphone model and advanced digital signal processing technology. The app is great for enjoying music, movies, and other audio in noisy environments.

There are a few other solid contenders like Audio Relax and Noizio as well for customizable sound masking and ambient noise creation. Most noise cancellation apps for Android use a combination of active noise canceling techniques like destructive interference and noise masking to help minimize distractions.

Key Features to Look For

When evaluating noise cancellation apps for Android, there are some key features to consider:

Real-time vs pre-recorded noise cancellation – Some apps offer real-time noise cancellation that analyzes ambient sounds and cancels them out in real-time. Others use pre-recorded sound samples to generate anti-noise. Real-time cancellation often works better.

Ability to select noise type – The ability to choose the type of noise to cancel, like chatter, traffic, machinery etc. allows the app to optimize cancellation for those sounds.

Custom noise cancellation levels – Apps that allow you to adjust the intensity of noise cancellation give you more control over the experience.

Background noise detection – Apps that can automatically detect increases in background noise and adjust cancellation levels accordingly provide a more seamless experience.

Checking whether an app has these key features can help determine if it will provide effective noise cancellation tailored to your needs.

Benefits of Noise Cancellation Apps

Noise cancellation apps can provide several benefits for users in various environments. Some of the key benefits include:

Increased focus and productivity – By eliminating unwanted background noise, noise cancellation apps allow users to concentrate better and stay focused on tasks. This leads to higher productivity and efficiency, especially in noisy workplaces. Studies have shown noise reduction can improve concentration, learning, and work performance.

Less noise disturbance – Noise cancellation apps help block out disruptive noises like chatter, traffic, machinery, etc. This creates a calmer, quieter environment making it easier to hear desired sounds properly. Users experience less disturbance and frustration from unwanted ambient noise.

Improved hearing and comprehension – By suppressing background noise and improving the audio signal, noise cancellation enables users to hear conversations, lectures, and media more clearly. Cleaner audio input leads to better hearing, listening comprehension, and call quality.

Lower stress levels – Exposure to excessive noise can induce stress by stimulating the nervous system. By providing respite from noise pollution, noise cancellation apps help users feel more relaxed and less fatigued. This promotes better mental health, mood, and well-being.




Limitations to Consider

While noise cancellation apps provide many benefits, there are some limitations to keep in mind:

Noise cancellation apps may not be as effective at blocking ambient sound compared to purpose-built noise cancelling headphones. Headphones form a physical barrier around the ears, while apps rely on processing microphone input to filter background noise. The noise reduction may not be as dramatic or complete (Source).

Most noise cancellation apps require access to your device’s microphone to pick up ambient noise. This means privacy could be a concern, as the app is listening to your environment. It’s important to only use trusted apps and review permissions.

Processing live audio can lead to artifacts, distortions or lag. Aggressive noise cancellation settings could make voices or audio sound unnatural. There is a tradeoff between noise reduction and retaining audio quality.

The constant use of the microphone and audio processing can drain battery life faster compared to normal use without the app. This needs to be considered for longer listening sessions.

Tips for Using Noise Cancellation Apps

To get the most out of noise cancellation apps, here are some tips to follow:

Find a quiet environment first. Noise cancellation works best when background noise is already low. Being in a noisy environment like a busy cafe or street will make it harder for the app to effectively cancel out sounds.

Use headphones for better effect. Noise cancelling headphones, especially over-ear models, will help block ambient noise before the app even starts processing sounds. This gives the app less external noise to have to deal with.

Disable notifications. Pop-up notifications from other apps can distract from the noise cancellation capabilities. Mute or pause other apps to avoid disruptions.

Close other apps. Running too many apps in the background can interfere with the performance of noise cancellation apps. Close out of other apps you aren’t using to allow maximum processing power.

Paid vs Free Noise Cancellation Apps

When looking for a noise cancellation app, one of the first decisions is whether to choose a paid or free version. Both options have their pros and cons.

The main advantage of paid apps is that they tend to offer more advanced features and better noise cancellation quality. For example, Krisp offers AI-powered noise cancellation for calls and recordings that can cut out background noise in real time. Paid apps like Krisp also tend to offer premium customer support.

On the other hand, free apps provide noise cancellation at no cost, making them accessible to more users. Popular free options like Audacity allow you to remove background noise from recordings after the fact. While the noise cancellation may not be as robust, free apps can still be very useful.

When deciding between paid and free, consider factors like your usage needs, noise cancellation quality, supported platforms, and premium features like real-time noise removal. For most robust results, paid options like Krisp are recommended, but free apps can also be very useful, especially for basic post-recording noise removal.

Future of Noise Cancellation Apps

The future looks bright for continued advancements and innovation in noise cancellation technology and apps. According to a report by Visionary Market Research, the global market for noise cancellation apps is expected to grow at a CAGR of 12% between 2024-2031, reaching a valuation of $4.5 billion by 2031.

One key area of predicted improvement is the use of artificial intelligence and machine learning to enable more adaptive and customizable noise cancellation. This could allow apps to learn a user’s sound preferences and automatically adjust settings based on the environment and audio input. For example, researchers at the University of Washington developed an AI system that allows users to select which sounds they want to hear through noise-canceling headphones.

We will also likely see further integration of noise cancellation into headphones, earbuds, phones, and other audio devices. Apps may be designed to specifically pair with certain hardware to optimize performance. There is also development of noise cancellation support directly within phone operating systems like iOS and Android.

As the technology advances, expect more customizable and nuanced noise cancellation capable of isolating voices over ambient noise. The goal is to move beyond simply eliminating all external sound, and allow more flexibility for users to craft an optimal soundscape.


In summary, there are several effective noise cancellation apps available for Android devices. While they can’t fully match the performance of dedicated hardware noise cancelling headphones, they provide a flexible software-based alternative for tuning out ambient noise and distractions. Key points covered include:

  • How the apps use your device’s microphone to sample background noise and generate an inverted waveform to cancel it out
  • Top app recommendations like Noisli, Krisp, and Reverb that provide advanced noise reduction features
  • Considerations around sound quality, battery usage, and microphone access when selecting an app
  • Tips for achieving the best results based on environment and headphone type
  • The pros and cons of paid versus free noise cancellation apps

With the right app choice and proper usage, Android users can take advantage of noise cancellation to improve focus, productivity, sleep, and overall audio experience. While not a perfect solution, these apps provide a handy noise reduction tool we can carry in our pockets.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *