Not only does a “death grip” cut into your phone’s ability to connect, it also increases the amount of radio-frequency radiation it’s pumping out.
Now you can see exactly how much more radiation your head is absorbing, with an app that estimates the RF output of your smartphone, in real time.
Israeli mobile-software company Tawkon released a video Monday that shows its app measuring the impact a “death grip” can have on a mobile device’s radiation. Using the app, an iPhone 4, BlackBerry Bold, and Google Nexus One all show a significant increase in RF radiation when held tightly in the user’s palm.
That’s to be expected: Whenever a cellphone has difficulty connecting with a cell tower, it increases its RF output in order to maintain the connection. Anything that interferes with that connection – be it a death grip, stepping into an elevator, or locating yourself in a low-signal area – will increase any phone’s RF output.
So is Tawkon suggesting that the infamous “death grip” can actually be detrimental to the user’s health?
“Tawkon doesn’t advocate that the death grip is necessarily unsafe, because final answers on the health ramifications of mobile phone usage won’t be known for decades, until researchers have had that time to track long-term usage and impact,” Tawkon co-founder Amit Lubovsky told Wired. ”However, recent studies do indicate a health impact of mobile phone radiation on mobile phone users, especially on people whose usage is termed excessive and cumulative. Until the long-term studies are concluded (decades from now), Tawkon believes consumers should have the right and ability to minimize their exposure to mobile phone radiation.”
Most ongoing studies cannot yet draw a causal link between cellphone usage and physical disorders, and Tawkon should know, since the company follows many of these studies.
The World Health Organization’s Interphone study, released in May, could draw no causal link between glioma or meningioma and cellphone use. However, it noted, “There were suggestions of an increased risk of glioma, and much less so meningioma, in the highest decile of cumulative call time, in subjects who reported usual phone use on the same side of the head as their tumor and, for glioma, for tumors in the temporal lobe.”
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