One of Popular Science’s 2013 “Hottest Gadgets” and a featured story for the New York Post, the “Silence” app has spoken volumes in the Android community. A student-developed app directing a phone to ring, vibrate, or remain silent depending on a schedule programmed by the user, “Silence” is a simple delight, a savior of every missed call or message, and the warrior against embarrassing rings in the middle of meetings or classes. It has accumulated over 50,000 downloads and proven that silence really is golden.
TCNJ computer science major Thomas Caputi ‘14, along with friends Corey Buttel and Sandile Keswa, created Epsilon labs, the company behind “Silence,” while in high school. The app was developed earlier this year. The trio began their profession in app development with “Slap,” a program that makes funny sounds when one swings the phone as if slapping.
“Slap was silly,” said Caputi, the backend developer for Epsilon Labs. “We really just made it to look professional and to see if we could figure out the certain features needed for ‘Silence’ to work.”
With the successful creation of ‘Slap,’ the three moved on to ”Silence.“ “It took us about two months of work cumulatively, though that was spaced out over time, because we were at different schools,” Caputi recalled. “After we finished, Corey downloaded it, then we just put it out on market.”
Epsilon Labs first released “Silence” onto XDA developers’ webpage, where it was soon featured on their main page and reviewed on their YouTube channel . Shortly after, Life hacker also featured “Silence” on their front page. Silence soon accumulated thousands of downloads, and the team was contacted by both Popular Science and the New York Post.
Caputi voices the company’s surprise at the application’s extreme success, “We thought we would get some downloads, but we never really expected it to be this big.”
Since creating the free ad-supported “Silence” app, Epsilon Labs has created an ad-free version, available for $1.99, and is moving forward to further embellish the simple app.
“We’re working on ‘Whitelist,’” said Caputi, explaining the app that allows certain programmed numbers to always “ring through,” regardless of phone settings through “Silence.” In addition, the company is working on the ”Chronogram Clock” for the home screen of android phones. A simple analog clock, the ”Chronogram Clock” takes items on a calendar and displays them as rings around the clock face, highlighting the time each event correlates to.
“For example,” explained Caputi, “Say you have an event from 2 to 4 p.m. The ‘Chronogram Clock’ will display as a ring section from the two to the four on the clock.”