How to turn your Android phone into a police radio scanner

Curious about police activity in your area, but don't want to invest in a dedicated police scanner? Try using your Android phone instead.

Scanner Radio

With an Android app called Scanner Radio, you can turn your Android phone into a portable police scanner. Volunteers with scanners provide over 3,100 audio streams from police and fire departments, weather radios, and amateur radio operators.

You can let Scanner Radio search for scanners near your current location, or manually search for scanners based on area, genre, or source.

Scanner radio main screen and browse
Screenshot by Ed Rhee

Once you find your favorite audio feeds, you can add them as favorites for quick access. You can also listen to archives of certain feeds, but that feature requires the Pro version ($2.99).

Scanner radio list and player
Screenshot by Ed Rhee

That's it. Just a little warning: listening in on police scanners can be addictive and scary, all at the same time.

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