Auditory BLS With Android Tablet / Phone

This information is only relevant if you want to use auditory bilateral stimulation (BLS) with a client AND you or your client will be using an Android tablet/phone.

Auditory BLS may be a good option when working with clients who are using a tablet/smartphone because of the small screen sizes which makes successful use of the virtual light bar more challenging. A standard tablet with a 10-12″ screen is just about large enough to use for visual BLS, however smartphone screens are in most cases too small and auditory BLS or butterfly taps may be more appropriate options.

We work hard to make sure the Bilateral Base platform is compatible with whatever device you and your clients have available (and Bilateral Base already supports the widest range of devices of any EMDR platform).

In most cases auditory BLS will work perfectly on Android devices, however some older models (4+ years old) do not properly support the technology we use to produce synchronised auditory BLS sounds.

If a device does not support auditory bilateral stimulation it will play the auditory BLS sound in both ears at the same time (or on some devices in one ear only) instead of in an alternating pattern to the left and right ears.

Your client will be using an Android tablet/phone #

  • Information about this is included in the ‘Preparing For Your Session’ guide for your clients. It may be helpful to share this with them
  • Most devices that are less than 4 years old will work fine with auditory BLS, but it’s advisable to test this at the start of the session so you know if it is available as an option
  • If your client is hearing auditory BLS in both ears at the same time (or in one ear only):
    • Check to see whether they are using wireless headphones as these are often not compatible with auditory BLS, ask your client to use wired headphones instead
    • If your client is already using wired headphones then the issue is likely that their device is not compatible with auditory BLS. Switch to an alternative BLS method such as the Virtual Light Bar or butterfly taps or ask your client to use a different device that does support auditory BLS (see Device Setup & Compatibility Guide)

You (the therapist) will be using an Android tablet or smartphone #

  • You don’t need to do anything different
  • Most devices that are less than 4 years old will work fine
  • If however you are hearing auditory BLS in both ears at the same time (or in just one ear) when using your Android device to run a session, this is not an issue
  • Your client will still be hearing it in an alternating pattern to their left and then right ears (on a compatible device) and that’s what’s important for auditory BLS to be administered correctly
  • Tip – you can choose not to hear the auditory BLS by selecting ‘Client Only’ in the ‘BLS Settings’ menu


Please note – we continue to work hard to ensure that the Bilateral Base platform ‘just works’ on any device/setup that you or your clients may have and we already offer the widest support of any online EMDR platform. With technology evolving quickly and with the petitions and pressure we are putting on the device manufacturers to address any special cases or compatibility issues, we are hopeful that at some point we no longer need to have any exceptions or special cases. These special cases are not unique to Bilateral Base and affect other online therapy platforms also (although they may not always provide clear information on them). Please also note that the goal posts for these issues do sometimes move as new products are released and software for Apple/Android is updated, so while we make every effort to keep this information correct and up to date, if you do experience something that is different to what we have described, then please contact us so we can assist you.