Burner brings disposable phone numbers to Android handsets


Burner, the privacy-oriented app that debuted on iPhone last summer, is now officially available for Android. The purpose of Burner is to create “disposable” phone numbers that can be used for calls and SMS, then conveniently erased from existence. Ad Hoc Labs, the firm behind Burner, cites such uses as :posting contact information on social media, facilitating transactions on classified sites, online dating, professional use by teachers, doctors, and lawyers, and more.” We guess prank calls makes the list as well, but let’s be a little more mature than that.

Burner is available as a free download from the Google Play Store. The initial download comes with one free disposable number, and additional numbers can be purchased for as little as $1.99.

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  1. #1 app for drug dealers.

    1. The name even comes from a drug dealer term.

      Burner – A throwaway prepaid cellphone, typically used by dealers. Used until the minutes are up, then thrown away so they cannot be tapped.

      Its a cool app though. I know we have all had the need for a number we could throw out once in a while.

      1. I’d use this mostly for prank calls.

      2. OMG! I can finally put a phone number on craigslist ads and not have to worry about being phone stalked but some Internet psycho.

        1. Use Google Voice for that.

    2. and probably that new “swatting” craze

    3. I think having the number attached to a physical device kind of ruins the whole drug dealer thing. When a dealer burns there phone they burn the entire thing. The number in this instance could still be traced back to a device still in use and might still cause some problems. Like gps and if burner uses plan minutes any calls would still get traced back to the original line or number. Maybe this app is actually designed to catch stupid drug dealers. Not sure I wanna be the developer on the hook for get dealers locked up.

  2. Cool idea, can see it being used to do more wrong than right. But I like the idea…

  3. This story makes me miss The Wire. Burners.

  4. Everyone I know already uses Google voice for this purpose…. The numbers last as long as you want too on there, this app is useless.

  5. but can they call you back to that number?

  6. that sucks you can’t keep the numbers for however long you want…

  7. You guys might try following the link and actually looking at the app description. Yes, you can get incoming and outgoing. Yes, you can use it for more than one call. Yes, you can keep it for as long as you want (not sure where you got the idea you couldn’t). The number gets “burned” when you choose, not automatically after one use.

    1. No you cannot… It cost a certain amount of credits and you get a certain pool of “Voice” Meaning calls received or sent each count as one… and 40 Text… So for 5 credits you can make or receive 15 calls and then the number will no longer work till you use more credits or just “burn” it and buy a new one.

    2. I only saw an option for keeping the number up to 2 months, and you have to pay for that. The free number only lasts 24 hours…

  8. Read the permissions…

    1. What concerns you about the permissions? I don’t see anything suspicious in there.

      1. I find no good reason to give this DEV my contact list, and certainly no reason for the app to require it.

    2. There is nothing remotely suspicious about those permissions. They are all required by a PHONE.

      1. There is nothing about using a phone that requires this app or DEV to have agrees to my contacts.

        1. Agrees -> access

        2. You are an idiot. You don’t deserve to have an Android phone. It is a phone app, used to make and receive phone calls. If it didn’t have access to your contacts, you wouldn’t be able to access your contacts from the app.

          1. Like I want to call my contacts anonymously? Why are you getting all name-calling hyper? I merely reminded folk to notice the permissions! Flaming is so immature and so ’90’s. I have more respect for my contacts than to spew their information randomly about the internet. Go tag your friends picture on fb…

          2. You may not want to call your contacts with this app, but a lot of people will. There are more uses than you realize. My point is, the permission is legitimate. Take off your foil hat. BTW, I don’t use facebook.

          3. Name calling again, eh? Point made.

          4. I see you are back to name-calling. Point made.

  9. Why would anyone pay for this when Google Voice is fee and can do the same thing?

  10. Well, all the discussions aside, if anybody wants to give it a try and wants to start out with a couple of credits, feel free to use this referral code: BMSGYCED

  11. Endorsed by

    1. lol

    2. Thank you for the AHAH !

  12. I just use Google Voice. The only thing I can see myself using this for is if I wanted to make a call to someone who I didn’t want calling me back, and in that case I can just have their number go to voicemail immediately.

  13. The available pool of phone numbers isn’t unlimited. Eventually… and probably pretty soon, when you burn your number and get a new one, the number you get will have been recently burned by someone else, and you’ll start getting all the calls they are trying to avoid. Sounds like a disaster in the making to me.

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