How to mute all phones in public places
Sometimes I go into a restaurant and I want to enjoy a meal or coffee and quietly read, and someone begins talking really loud on their cell phone. It's obnoxious
With more than 100 million cell phones worldwide and growing, the problem is likely to get worse. In the United States alone, it's estimated that in five years 84 percent of U.S. citizens will have a mobile phone.
Smartphones have become an indispensable communication and entertainment tool in everyone's daily life. Today, many users spend a lot of time on smartphone applications such as social networks, mobile games and live streaming platforms.
But a backlash against the cellular nuisance has already begun. In restaurants across the United States, signs asking diners to turn off their phones are becoming increasingly common. In Maine's Baxter State Park, mobile phones are illegal except for emergencies. The resistance has even reached the White House: President has reportedly banned cell phones from staff meetings.
In fact, several governments across the world are now considering imposing etiquette on mobile gabbers in public spaces by legalizing technology that blocks cellular signals.
Cell phone jammers have been around since 1998. The devices, which cost around $1,000, can block signals in a room about the size of a movie theater. The jammer sends out a low-power, encoded radio signal or modulated radio wave.
GPS jammers work in one of two ways. Some devices set their signal to the same frequency as pagers and mobile phones, cutting off communication between handsets and base stations. Others work as electronic filters that fool mobile phones into thinking there are no frequencies available to make or receive calls. Manufacturers of the devices say the jamming only affects the designated area (most radii are a couple dozen to several hundred feet) and works only on cellular transmissions.
Sounds like the perfect solution to pesky phones, right? The problem is, except for Israel and Japan, cell phone jammers remain illegal.
The tide, however, may be changing. This past spring, both Hong Kong and Canada announced they would consider legalizing jammers in an effort to curb bad phone behavior in public. Around the same time, the leaders of India's parliament revealed they had already installed the devices to avoid interruptions during sessions.
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