Trust can be a touchy subject in general, and is often required when sharing personal information—especially so when handing our phones over to others. You may not have a ton of secret or nefarious information on your device, but that doesn't mean you want your mom or snoopy coworker having easy access to your messages or Facebook app.
Locking applications can help, but then you're left explaining to someone why your Gmail or Instagram apps are locked, and if it's a significant other, well, now you've got some explaining to do.
Instead of locking apps, simply hide them so the conversation never takes place. The best way I've found to do that is by hiding them in an innocent-looking app, and what could be more innocent than a calculator?
Note that the hiding function is accomplished by "freezing" apps, which essentially removes them from your visible app list while not actually removing them from your device. The process of freezing requires deep system access, and for that reason, your Android device must be rooted.
Developer Inderdeep Singh, known as IDSstudio in the Android world, created a fully functional calculator that's really an app hider called Smart Hide Calculator, which can be downloaded for free from the Google Play Store.
The first time you open Smart Hide Calculator, you'll notice it says Set Password up top. Enter a passcode, then hit the equals sign (=) and confirm it. After setting your passcode, you'll be prompted to create a backup code, just in case.
If you ever forget your passcode, enter the password recovery mode by entering 123456789+987654321 in the calculator, followed by the equals sign (=).
To hide apps, just select the Freeze Apps option, then select apps from a list of the ones you have installed. They will disappear from your app drawer and appear as if they're no longer installed. Be aware that any locked-apps will still show as shortcuts on your home screen, although they will not be accessible (showing an "App Not Installed" message).
When you're ready to use your hidden apps again, simply enter your passcode and select "Un-Freeze Apps."
You can also hide files, though, many have stated that using this function actually deleted the files off their system, or made them very difficult to find and/or get back. If you decide to go this route, be aware of the issues others have run in to. Personally, I only use this app only for hiding apps.
All in all, Smart Hide Calculator does the job to hide apps you don't want others to have free access to. Let us know what you think in the comments below as well as on our Facebook and Twitter feeds.
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