Apparently this is a bug with android: http://androidforums.com/htc-hero/74258-headphones-plugged-external-speaker-still-rings.html Issue 6696 - android - SMS/E-mail/Incoming Call notifications while on headphones - Android - An Open Handset Alliance Project - Google Project Hosting Issue 16667 - android - Notifications are played through external speaker when headphones are plugged in - Android - An Open Handset Alliance Project - Google Project Hosting basically, a call comes in and the external speaker plays the ringer, requiring one to have their phone on vibrate or silent, even though with headphones plugged in all audio should be routed through the headphones. Couple this with the fact that the external microphone is stupidly disabled when headphones are plugged in (meaning that you have to unplug your headphones when a call comes in so you're able to talk) and you have a really ugly and inelegant scenario on your hands: You're at work, listening to music on headphones. A call comes in, and your ringer blares out, startling the whole office. You answer the call to quickly silence the ringer, but before actually saying hello you have to fumble with your headphone cord and unplug it. It's ridiculous. It's the only thing I absolutely hate about my Thunderbolt right now. My old iPhone 3G handled this kind of scenario much more elegantly. Anyone got workarounds to make this work better?