Suggestion For Apple and Other Smartphone Makers

October 29, 2011


Like many people, when the World Health Organization announced in May that cell phone radiation was now classified in the same “carcinogenic hazard” category as car exhaust and chloroform, I was alarmed.  I suppose it doesn’t help that radiation seems to be a complicated matter, with conflicting studies and corporate spin making a lot of noise.  At any rate, there seems to be a pretty good reason to start being more careful.

In the past year or two, I’ve found out that two friends of mine have been diagnosed with brain tumors (brain lesions).  Because of that, the subject brain cancer–and the cell phone’s potential role in causing it–has been coming up more and more often.

I use an iPhone, which is constantly pulling information down from a 3G network.  I wanted to put a little more distance between me and the phone.  At first, I tried taking my phone out of my pocket every time I’m not driving or traveling…but I kept forgetting it in random places.  Since then, I’ve been trying to remember to turn my phone to “airplane mode” at home and at the studio.  But it’s hard to remember sometimes; and on top of that, the iPhone actually makes it cumbersome.  If I want to keep it connected to my WiFi network, I have to go to the settings, turn on “airplane mode,” then exit that screen and go to a different screen to turn WiFi on (and yet another screen if I want bluetooth).

With that said, I have a request for Apple.  Give us a “3G Auto-Off” mode.  When my phone detects its familiar WiFi network (home, office), it should automatically switch off 3G, but leave on the WiFi and/or bluetooth.  It’s not a perfect solution, but it’s better than keeping a “hot” phone in my pocket all day.

I realize that I’m not that well-versed on this subject, so if any of this is incorrect or needs updating, please feel free to let me know in the comments.  And feel free to continue the discussion below.

Please re-Tweet or post to Facebook if you like this idea.

EDIT: Thanks for all the great comments.  For the record, I know the link between cell use and cancer is still being researched.  Furthermore, I’m no extremist, I simply fall into the “better to be safe than sorry” category.  I’d rather do some simple things that keep me more protected.  Feel free to keep discussing, below.

mike

112 Comments

  1. blurredspot0 on January 9, 2012 at 12:49 pm

    Hey Mike, looks like you had success with your suggestion to apple. They introduced a feature to deactivate 3G in iOS 5.1 Beta 3. Look there: http://www.macrumors.com/2012/01/09/apple-seeds-ios-5-1-beta-3-to-developers/

  2. zahralp on December 25, 2011 at 12:18 am

    omg i am so glad you posted this mike , i totally agree and hope the apple ppl hear this out ,

    but the thing i have a problem about is that i dont think there s gonna be alot difference between the radiation a call or text gives than a 3G i mean its all really bad for you …if you wanted to think healthy wise you would just leave your phone alone , which is never gonna happen to neither of us … technology is just making life sad, isnt it ,…

  3. hariz19 on November 23, 2011 at 4:13 am

  4. hariz19 on November 23, 2011 at 4:04 am

    Dear Mike.
    For concern for your health, you should ditch your iPhone for Android!
    Android has widgets that can be put on your home screen that enable you to switch off wifi, go to airplane mode, turn off 3g, all from the home screen, with just one simple touch.
    Try it, its awesome!
    Android owns iPhone.

  5. dclarkson94 on November 14, 2011 at 3:00 pm

    Of course, this will most likely not get read by Mike…. but…

    http://dclarkson.co.cc/home/?p=39

  6. penneysound on November 11, 2011 at 10:29 am

    about the picture, it’s a pretty massive leap from “heat” to “radiation causing negative health effects”. holding a phone to your face for 15 minutes would heat up your face even if the phone had no battery in it. it doesn’t mean anything.

  7. gheistxanimus on November 10, 2011 at 1:26 pm

    I feel a little better about not having a updated phone now. Though the one I never use is like 10 years old now. . .It’s helpful info though. I’d heard the rumors and whatnot but wasn’t sure if there was much merit to it. However, there are side-effects to most things we use so its not too suprising. Thanks for posting this up. Though I needn’t worry about it lol.

  8. akismet-e6dc45582db9948a882d6fcf7146d38b on November 9, 2011 at 2:54 pm

    That’s the same person in both pictures. It’s just like the before and after pics on a diet scheme. I don’t believe nuffin. Straight nuffin.

  9. faruqster on November 8, 2011 at 10:07 pm

    Mike, I know you are a fan of Apple stuff, but just FYI – on Android, there are several ways to do this. Perhaps the most novel way is an app called Tasker, which lets you set up profiles. You can have it run programs like, “If X is true, then do Y”, and using this, you can make it do anything, including turn off 3G/4G automatically as soon as WiFi connects. You can even have it turn on bluetooth if you exceed a certain speed so that it’ll automatically connect to your car. It’s pretty astounding actually. I’m not affiliated with them at all, but I just wanted to let you know that what you are asking for is possible. Also, the Chicago summit in February was incredible =)

  10. angelnyn on November 8, 2011 at 12:49 pm

    I haven’t read all of the comments, so maybe it’s already been said.. But you can switch off 3G and still use Wi-Fi, without switching to Airplane mode, and just keeping Wi-Fi on all the time. When going to settings, General, select network, switch off 3G and Cellular Data. Then go to Settings, Wi-Fi, and enable Wi-Fi, everytime you are in a place that has Wi-Fi, your Iphone will connect with that network, if it’s a familiar one. The only downside is that you won’t have internet when there is no Wi-Fi signal, unless you switch on 3G and Cellular Data.

    And I’m sorry to hear about your 2 friends.. I can imagine that I will start letting you think about these things.

  11. penneysound on November 6, 2011 at 8:17 pm

    tyson is probably the biggest populariser of science today, a worthy successor to sagan, it would probably be a good idea for you to talk to him not only about this issue but about wider scientific issues and how you could express them in art. you not only have an immense power to communicate good ideas to people, but also a power to unintentionally communicate bad ideas (chester supporting PETA comes to mind), so i think you have a responsibility to acquire the critical thinking skills to tell one from the other. i hope to see you take a more scierntifically-minded outlook on life and art, there is unspeakable beauty in it.

  12. penneysound on November 6, 2011 at 8:11 pm

    while i don’t see any problem with the suggestion, i will suggest what i’ve suggested in other comments to you, mike, that you read some books like carl sagan’s “the demon-haunted world”. i’ve always thought your art could benefit by being scientifically informed, and sagan always spoke about how science needs artists to convey its beauty to the public. but it would also help in this case to help you understand how the scientific method works, and how peer-review works. neil degrasse tyson was once asked about this issue, and said that in regards to the issue of cell phone use being linked to cancer, the experimental results are consistent with no effect at all.

  13. kristinabe on November 4, 2011 at 12:20 am

    I join in and put a signature for the company’s request to Apple. Because i dont want another phone besides iPhone. But me too “i simply fall into the “better to be safe than sorry”

  14. manotxo on November 3, 2011 at 3:10 pm

    The combination of colors you use in your blog (text and background) is annoying for the eyes. After reading a while, if you look away, you still see those colors … Not cool. Do not know if it’s because of my eyes or it happens to more people… Anyway, you’re the greatest

  15. aravind221 on November 1, 2011 at 11:17 am

    i agree on your point mike , u have been such a great inspirer for us fans to start using apple products i frankly bought an i phone 4 due to its excellent features + since u “give a thumbs up for apple products ”

    Now when it comes to radiations NOKIA’S top the chart its always been under chaos that their batteries are subjected to emit more harmful radiations than any other companies and if subjected to high temperatures climates might even explode. Its noit only just nokia’s but motorolas , Htc , sony erricsons even top the list check it out here >> http://reviews.cnet.com/2719-6602_7-291-2.html?tag= and there’s no Iphone in the list Glad its a bit safe compared to everything :)

  16. lazizash on November 1, 2011 at 7:52 am

    Hey Mike, my phone (it’s Nokia, not smartphone) turns off 3G automaticaly, and iPhone can’t do it? Just get a phone without 3G and WiFi :D Ha

  17. sunnehautumn on October 31, 2011 at 11:05 am

    Hiya Mike and guys and girls,
    I know, switching connections on iDevices is a pain :/
    Good solution is jailbreaking. Though Apple hates when people do that, it’s legal :P Basically, if your device is jailbroken/rooted you have unlimited access. You can do anything you want, and so can apps you install. AFAICR, there are a few apps on Cydia (sort of an App Store on jailbroken devices) that handle connectivity. So, you can find one and set it to auto-switch to WiFi :D
    Regards,
    Alex

  18. sweetsixteen79 on October 31, 2011 at 10:22 am

    It’s the effects of a new drug who’s name : PHONE

  19. derekoswald on October 31, 2011 at 10:11 am

    Posted to LPAssociation.com. May not be news per say, but we could tell this was very important to you so we spread the word! Hopefully Apple pays attention -Derek

  20. aline4lp on October 31, 2011 at 9:02 am

    I think you’re right, Mike.
    As long as we don’t see that anything is happening to our health, we don’t do anything. Many people know that the radiation may be dangerous, but they are too lazy to do such stuff you do…
    I don’t have his problem because I have a iPhone without 3g, so I can only log in the internet on Wi-fi (I decided for me that I don’t need constant internet connection)
    But I guess that’s not a possibility for you ;)
    So though it doesn’t affect me I will spread the word about your idea, also to put this danger more into people’s focus.

  21. shaedys on October 31, 2011 at 6:13 am

    The biggest study so far on cell phone cancer was the INTERPHONE project, a study performed in 13 countries and it found a negative correlation between cell phone usage and cancer rates. Buts its implausible that cell phones prevent cancer. Over all there are still concerns for people who use cell phones an average of 30 minutes a day for 10 years but for people not in this range. Overall there has been no increase in brain cancer recently while cell phone usage has grown exponentially. 2 out of 10 show a link, the rest show no link or say they are inconclusive. As always more conclusive data will be found in the future.

  22. alexabiol on October 31, 2011 at 6:04 am

    Keep in mind that even if the 3G is switched off the phone still emits sporadically electromagnetic radiation, even when you don’t speak, because the phone tries to “communicate” with the nearest base station antenna.It’s within its function.Of course, when you are making a call it emits continuously.

  23. alexabiol on October 31, 2011 at 5:33 am

    Suggestions for the safe use of the most commonly used radiation transmitting devices:1)Mobile phone:Use with wired Bluetooth,keeping the mobile phone away from the body or inside a special case.Particular caution should be taken in the car&in closed places,the radiation is transmitted from the mobile phone and must have access to open space in order to escape.2)Wireless phone:The base of wireless phones transmits continuously,therefore it must be kept away during sleep.The earpiece transmits radiation during conversation&it must be used barely minimum.3)Baby monitors:keep them at a distance of at least 2 meters away from the infant.4)Wireless network&microwave:Safety comes from the distance

  24. elcirith on October 31, 2011 at 5:22 am

    If you jailbreak your Iphone, theres an app that auto-offs 3G when you connect to a Wifi network…
    Also, you could get SBSettings and no longer have to go to so many pages to change your settings

  25. Aditya_the_warrior_within on October 31, 2011 at 5:20 am

    This is a recent study posted just about 10 days back
    http://mashable.com/2011/10/21/cellphones-cancer-study/

    As you can see, the sample for this study was not some hundres but almost the poplulation of a country! I still agree with you better to be safe than sorry since all studies have some flaw here and there but here you find strong ‘evidence’ or however you wish to put it.

    Hope that helped.

  26. alexabiol on October 31, 2011 at 5:04 am

    Electromagnetic radiation spectrum includes the ionizing&the non ionizing radiation.Non ionizing man-made radiation started in the 20th century with the telecommunication taking a major part of applications(mobile telephony,wireless networks&phones,microwave ovens,etc)Initially it was considered safe to be exposed to low levels of such radiation,at least below the so-called “thermally induced”changes in the cells.However it’s been realized that “non-thermal” molecular&cellular changes are very serious under low level exposures(headache,temporary loss of memory,lack of concentration,insomnia&fast pulsation,dna damage,acoustic neuroma,low fertility,brain tumor&other types of cancer)

  27. Linkin Park Belgium on October 31, 2011 at 3:47 am

    Hope everyone’s voting ^^

  28. anvanoppens on October 31, 2011 at 3:09 am

  29. ristinw on October 31, 2011 at 1:02 am

    Maybe this new automatic function will be added to the next next Iphone model with the voice control feature. :P

  30. ristinw on October 30, 2011 at 8:47 pm

    I totally agree with you. Prevention is better than cure! One of my best friend likes talking on the phone for long hours so much. Evey time she calls, we chat for more than an hour (to be more correct, I am only a listener), after that, I always having a slight headache and feeling the heat spinning in my head. > . < I thought I was too sensitive, cause she never had the headache (I guess), and I've never told her that I wasn't feeling alright after listening to her talking for long hours on the Iphone. Later, the news came out, saying that talking long hours on cell phones can damage brain cells. I was happy that finally I have the excuse to refuse talking that long on cell phones. =u=

  31. svstels on October 30, 2011 at 4:47 pm

    Well, ok. For those of you who doubt with this topic, there is a simple device called radiation meter or geiger counter (or we call it dosimetr in soveit russia lol). And there are lots of funny (or sad) tables like that: http://www.raketablog.ru/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/radiation_chart_3.png
    Ofcourse radiation causes on DNA of cells body that causes cancer. But your own strong immune system should destroy cells with wrong dna… So, everything is about feeling good and being healthy. We should firstly pay our attention for that.

  32. r2d277 on October 30, 2011 at 4:07 pm

    Radiation from mobile phones are part of the electromagnetic waves among which are also the radiation emitted by wireless phones, household appliances or even WiFi …
    This means that we live in a tangle of electromagnetic waves that are potentially harmful to our health. The risks are not well known and, as you said in your post, all this is still being researched. It’s clear that it’s scary…

  33. crusty85 on October 30, 2011 at 3:13 pm

    I would say, use another phone. =P
    But the research is probably with all cell phones I guess.
    I thought the radiation had gone down now with all the new technology, but apparently not. =/

  34. adrixlp on October 30, 2011 at 1:21 pm

    why don’t you just jailbreak your iphone?
    i know what you think when you read jailbreak, you think “piracy”, but is not about that, have you heard about SBSettings? it´s an “add”, it apears when you tap the top of the screen, and you can turn off/on the wi-fi, 3g, Bluetooth etc, you don’t have to go to the settings menu.

  35. shinodacakes77 on October 30, 2011 at 12:51 pm

    I’m sorry about your friends. How are they doing??
    You seem to have a good idea it’s smart. It’s a shame that something so useful can be so harmful. I wish I could offer a suggestion or write you long comment filled with statistics and stuff, but I really can’t. Sorry :/

  36. michelle2014 on October 30, 2011 at 10:03 am

    MIKE i agree with what you are saying. technology is an amazing, yet harmful thing. if the makers of these dangerous phones no that they are bad for our health WHY don’t they try to fix them. i mean seriously all it takes is one death linked to the whole radiation thing and the company is sued. inventors these days really need to worry about our well being then how fool their pockets are. on a certain website there advise for less radiation damage is use a text message.ARE THEY FREKIN KIDDING ME> we shouldn’t have to worry with using a text message they should fix the dang things. mike i appreciate your concern, and i WILL re-tweet this.

  37. shoegaze4u on October 30, 2011 at 8:59 am

    This feature wouldn’t solve the problem. Because at home, you won’t carry the phone close to the body, so there isn’t a radiation problem when you are at home. It must to be found a solution for the road. Apple needs to work to produce lower radiation levels.

    By the way, it doesn’t makes sense to put a smartphone at home into flight mode, and make you not reachable. This reduce a smartphone to absurdtity.

    To reduce the radtiation, I disabled Bluetooth, push service and localisation service, so the iPhone doesn’t have to send data all the time.

  38. thegluelpfan on October 30, 2011 at 6:19 am

    Truth being told it’s not just smart phones.It’s all cell phones and no matter what studies might show I will still have this concern in the back of my mind cause the way I see it there’s no way this type of technology would be absolutely harmless.I do try to keep my cell phone as far away from me as possible,although one the big mistakes I make is falling asleep with it near my head.I do hope that sometime in the future someone will find a solution or will give such a good argument that I’ll be totally convinced.

  39. nadinevee on October 30, 2011 at 4:14 am

    so nice to see someone else thinks different =;o) AND share his opinion ;)
    this is what i got today on fb, to think about :

  40. curlylp on October 30, 2011 at 2:06 am

    I like the idea.
    Well, since World Health Organization talked about this subject i started to be a little worried… Anyway, we are not sure about anything but it’s better be safe.

  41. justaminor on October 30, 2011 at 1:45 am

    Hi Mike, I work for Apple in Plymouth, UK. – Last year I finished a software engineering course at the University of Plymouth based on a new type of product called a femtocell. Its been a product that has been around for some phone providers for some time, It Works by using your landline connection to re-transmit a 3G connection. But the research we did suggest’s that with the correct source code built into a handset, all you need to do is re-transmit that data over wi-fi or even “Smart Bluetooth”. We managed to successfully complete the project on an iPhone 3GS handset, meaning no SAR radiation from a Cellular connection. Best Regards,
    Steve.

    PS – I love your work.

  42. moskusstrife on October 30, 2011 at 12:00 am

    I read something similar once, but it was something about the sperm quality of men.

    http://articles.cnn.com/2008-09-18/health/cellphone.sperm_1_cell-phone-sperm-quality-oxidative?_s=PM:HEALTH

    The “funny” thing is that Dutchmen (Nokia is Dutch) have one of the finest sperm qualities in world! Sounds weird, but it must be true somehow – I read it in a scientific margazine (can’t remember which one is was).

  43. icemonster23 on October 29, 2011 at 10:44 pm

    this time article says there’s no link between cellphone and cancer…

    http://healthland.time.com/2011/10/21/largest-study-on-cell-phones-and-cancer-finds-no-link/

  44. 1oo71 on October 29, 2011 at 10:42 pm

    Sorry to hear about your friends.
    I’ve been skeptical of mobile radiation since I got my iPhone because it physically made me uncomfortable.
    I always keep it in airplane mode unless I’m expecting or need to make a call. I check for messages at intervals and if there are none, switch airplane back on. I pretty much only turn it off when necessary. It’s why I’ve never been into apps that require connection and wait for computer internet instead.
    When I need to have my phone on, I keep it away from me in my bag on the floor if I’m out, or on a table across the room at home (ringer on so I can hear).
    Good to see you talking about this issue.

  45. jershalp on October 29, 2011 at 10:28 pm

    Android phones have that option…. they switch on to a wifi network when they see one, turning 3G off….. i guess u should switch…
    But i do like the fact that u have taken ur time to blog about this… M putting this up in fb n twitter cuz i think ita a gud idea….

  46. theresiaria on October 29, 2011 at 10:16 pm

    I understand that radiation is dangerous for our bodies, and we should keep our cell phone from the head, to avoid excessive radiation

  47. nikoshinoda on October 29, 2011 at 10:06 pm

    Mike,thx for yr concerned ab some effect form cell that can make to the cancer i think so,when you bring up the point that made us aware also…thx ^_*
    Anyway i used i-Phone 3GS 2 yrs ago, 1st step i set to the settings b4 > opened the Wi-Fi mode to “ON” > setting agian when it shuts down the 3G mode if my i-Phone get the Wi-Fi area..it will make automatically.

  48. JAVHIERA GUEVARA ARCE on October 29, 2011 at 10:04 pm

    Esta es una gran manera de prevenir A las personas
    Ya que esto esta presentando graves dificultades en la vida humana
    Ademas este enunciado a sido nombrado en muchas partes del mundo y muy poca gente sabe sobre este concepto….
    para mas ayuda…..publicar esto en distintos sitios de la web.
    Esto es un gran aporte para la sociedad.
    GRACIAS MIKE LO TOMARE EN CUENTA.

  49. Alexandra Nofi on October 29, 2011 at 9:30 pm

    I don’t know why I find this so interesting, but I do. I think it’s because there are so many different theories about what does, and does not, cause cancer. Cancer cells are a mutation, so a lot of people think cancer is a virus, and cervical cancer has even been proven to be caused by a virus (and certain variations of that virus). Microwaves and radiation in general get blamed, but the one I find most unique is that people believe it’s related to karma. I have a friend who tends to be very abrasive, and unhappy, and she has had cancer three times in her life. Well, you’re a sweet person though so I doubt karma would come after you!

  50. 筱田の友 on October 29, 2011 at 9:16 pm

    Mike, calm down! microwave can be used to cook food because the oven at your home is about 1100W(kJ/s). While the microwave of our phones are just about 1/1000 of it. So it won’t cook your brain!
    But i know there is possibility for very close emission that may affect our brain activity. So I suggest you to use headphones instead of sticking your iphone next to your ear hole as its the easiest way for radiation to reach your brain. I think normally if microwaves were to penetrate to our inside. They could be absorbed by our body fluid easily(thats y we dun use it in submarine). so dun be too scared! Hope that helps.

    Wish you and your friends all well.
    Don’t panic.=)

  51. iamorzing on October 29, 2011 at 6:46 pm

    Im also a iPhone user,iOS is awesome undoubtedly.
    however, we still hv to admit it isn’t prefect.
    somehow, Android is doing better on switching 3G to Wifi mode.

    I just shoot a video to display that.


    賢治くん, maybe that’s why we should get another Android phone.

  52. argol8489 on October 29, 2011 at 6:06 pm

    Unfortunately sometimes the technological advances make life easier in some respects, but also impair vital aspects of life as her own health. Many of us are “immersed” in these technological advances, so much so that we do create false needs and form a dependence unnecessarily to be constantly “connected”.

    I also believe in the investigations of the World Health Organization. I have an Iphone 3G and clearly in the manual advises not to exceed the length of exposure to cell phone radiation (radiofrequency) longer than recommended by the FCC. It also advises that when making a call and to transmit data, keep it away from your body at least 15 mm.

  53. polyattack on October 29, 2011 at 5:57 pm

    Ah, poor Jensen

  54. JAVHIERA GUEVARA ARCE on October 29, 2011 at 5:47 pm

    ESO ES MUY GENIAL!!!

  55. navimama on October 29, 2011 at 5:29 pm

    I know my android lets me turn data off, & leave wireless on. Airplane mode also turns off the receiving of calls though, and you want that, as well as the data off? Maybe just get a separate wireless device, & use airplane mode? An excuse to get an iPad? ;)

    It’s only dangerous to the brain if you use the phone next to your head for hours daily. If you don’t, it’s negligible. The rest of the body isn’t as sensitive. Technically I shouldn’t keep my wirless headset on at work for the entire eight hours, only when I’m on a call. We’re bathed in emf radiation by the earth. Wireless isn’t really any safer or less safe. You have the same effect with cordless landline phones…

  56. lpsoul on October 29, 2011 at 5:19 pm

    Wait let me rephrase that last sentence. When you’re not near a wifi source, your iphone will not automatically use 3G.

  57. lpsoul on October 29, 2011 at 5:16 pm

    Hey Mike. You can go to settings > general > network > and turn off cellular data to turn off 3G. Turning it off lets your iphone not use 3G when your not near a wifi source.

  58. thecybershot on October 29, 2011 at 4:57 pm

    I use an Android phone and they come with a little HUD-like thing that shows the current status of all the radios (Bluetooth, 3G, WiFi) and you can tap on their respective icons to turn them on or off.

    And from the looks of it, iControl SBSettings imitates the same thing on an iPhone. I don’t have an iPhone so I don’t know if it works but it sure seems like something you might wannna check out:
    http://moreinfo.thebigboss.org/moreinfo/SBSettings.php

  59. ms3190 on October 29, 2011 at 4:39 pm

    in a few decades all phones will be radiation shielded or something and they’ll say ‘how did they use those death machines back then?’
    at least we’re finding out more about the dangers with them.

    but i also worry about having my laptop on my lap etc.

  60. adhara9 on October 29, 2011 at 4:23 pm

    You can look at the same scientific evidence that the WHO looked at. Here is the National Cancer Institute summarizing each of the various (credible) international research studies, written for a general audience:

    http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/factsheet/Risk/cellphones

    There is one “statistically significant” result out of many “statistically insignificant” (null) results and the WHO believed that was enough to warrant the “carcinogenic hazard” category. Based on what YOU think is important, you may feel the same way or you may come to a different conclusion.

    (sorry for the double post)

  61. thecybershot on October 29, 2011 at 4:02 pm

    Hey Mike, take a look at http://www.auto3g.net

    I believe this little iPhone app does exactly what you want done and more!
    It shuts down the 3G network (but keeps 2G on) when you lock your phone.
    It turns it back on when you unlock it. Also, according to the site, “Version 2.0 now allows you to have Auto3G automatically turn off the 3G radio when you have a Wifi connection.”

    Problem solved… hopefully :)

  62. jdennis88 on October 29, 2011 at 3:55 pm

    I love my iPhone, but I’m constantly worried about the radiation it omits. It’s gotten to the point where I try to limit how much I use my it. In fact, there have been a few times where I’ve taken a call and the phone almost seems to burn against my ear – not good! Now when I try to take a call I always put it on speaker and hold it a distance away. Yeah, it’s not ideal, but I suppose it’s better than keeping the phone right next to my head.

    Really, somebody needs to work out how to minimize the amount of radiation coming from mobile phones. How can that be achieved? I have no idea. Hopefully somebody can figure it out.

  63. emzlp123 on October 29, 2011 at 3:54 pm

    I feel so silly. I had forgotten about the last piece you’d written, about turning the airplane mode on but forgetting to turn it back off. Sorry…

  64. emzlp123 on October 29, 2011 at 3:44 pm

    After I read this (and commented, sorry for the double post) but I started to look thoruhg my phones settings. I recently got the new iPhone 4s and in the settings, when you switch the 3G off, there is the option to switch WiFi back on. I dont know if this is any help to you or not.
    Peace!

  65. mrclal on October 29, 2011 at 3:30 pm

    Mike, I used to be an Iphone user and today I’m an Android user (Nexus one). I use to have this kind of problems on Iphone too, but not anymore. All I can do is suggest you to try and Android phone. There you can place Widgets on the phone screen making these options just one click away.. switching 2G or 3G, WiFi On or OFF and Airplane mode.
    All I do is leave the phone all day on 2G mode, switching to 3G just when I need speedy connection.. when at home, when the WiFi is on, it turns of the 3G and disables the internet through the 2G.. All just one click away!
    I hope it could be a help.. Apple is cool, but Android is making some stuff more much easier! ;D

  66. clbreeze on October 29, 2011 at 3:24 pm

    great idea

  67. poik67 on October 29, 2011 at 3:16 pm

    Not trying to knock the WHO but their record isn’t really great and it seems like their finding is more of a “well were not sure but we think it might be bad so we will say it might be to cover our butts.”
    They really screwed up the H1N1 diagnosis…
    I do find your picture very interesting and I wonder what that person would look like after resting their head on the hand for 15 minutes. Or doing something such as wearing headphones.
    The most recent study was a Danish one… http://www.ccst.us/news/2011/20111027phone.php Their conclusion was no proof.
    I think part of the problem is a lack of a true control group…

  68. My bit of insanity on October 29, 2011 at 3:16 pm

    I agree 100% with this. All the mixed studies saying if you keep it in your pocket you get prostate cancer or infertility, if you keep it too close to your head you can get cancer of the brain. I do not get why apples new notification slider from the top of the screen doesn’t allow you to quickly alter things like 3g and wifi. I found this sort of thing on the internet, but you need to jailbreak your iphone and i refuse to do so. If someone who sits at home programming his own software for the iphone can develop something like this then surely apple can

  69. cherrybubble89 on October 29, 2011 at 3:12 pm

    Best solution: Not having a cell phone (They are ANNOYING!!)
    Yes right, I’m 22 years old and I do not use a cell phone! And I am still alive, HA!

    I will use it again soon in my last days of pregnancy to call my husband- thats it.

    But anyway, it is still a nice idea for those who cant live without their phone or who need it for work etc. !

  70. thomasdaley9000 on October 29, 2011 at 3:08 pm

    I heard that using a bluetooth headset helps?

  71. longy909 on October 29, 2011 at 3:06 pm

    Surely an App could be developed to achieve this?

  72. mochachocalounge on October 29, 2011 at 2:59 pm

    http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs193/en/ is this what you are referring to from W.H.O? Mike, I have a few things to say about this:

    1. This DOESN’T confirm there are long term health issues connected with and as a result from using a mobile phone. It does say on there that research on this is on-going and it will take a longer period of time before we REALLY know the risks.

    2. As far as my fear of cancer goes, I’ve taken the pill for over 10 years and have to for health reasons only. I know the studies have suggested it increases risk of breast cancer, my aunty had it I know what it entails. I have no choice though, I’d be ill without it. We just have to be brave.

  73. erimarika on October 29, 2011 at 2:53 pm

    Mike, it’s been like this for my IPhone since I started using my IPhone, but looking at my settings airplane mode is off, and WIFI mode is on, and that’s all I can tell right now…
    I love your music and your art pieces, and I’m looking very much forward to seeing you at your next world tour!!

    Kaoru

  74. simona93 on October 29, 2011 at 2:52 pm

    It’s rather worrying, but I think it’s the similar fight as the pesticides and genetically-mutated everything, polluted waters and side-effects of all the pills and stuff. It may change though, I’d really love to see that, but I’m not an optimist.
    Anyway, I’m just a student so I’m completely happy with my 8 hour per day connection to the school’s WiFi and I don’t have any permanent 3G internet connection set with my operator ;)

  75. erimarika on October 29, 2011 at 1:47 pm

    Mike, my IPhone automatically turns off 3G where WIFI is available:)

    • M Shinoda on October 29, 2011 at 2:16 pm

      How do you make it do that?

  76. dcl1982 on October 29, 2011 at 1:11 pm

    Larry King had an episode on this issue a few years ago. Consequently, I started seeing a whole bunch of people using blue-tooth.

    Hope your friends get better soon!

    • M Shinoda on October 29, 2011 at 2:15 pm

      I heard Bluetooth is also bad for you. The pieces I saw recommended hard-wired headphones or speakerphone over bluetooth…

  77. evooba on October 29, 2011 at 12:35 pm

    Well yeah but I read like 1-2 weeks ago that cel phones DON’T cause brain cancer according to recent studies. They sure do some damage, yes I’m not denying that and you’re idea is pretty cool. I use an iPhone as well and I basically turned the 3G off (on or off doesn’t make a difference really). That way I’m always connected to my WiFi and the signal reception is perfect, no probs at all. And I try to use the handsfree when I know I’m gonna be talking for a long time. What I can’t do though, is put the phone in my bag. I need to have it in my pocket all the time. Feels more safe there I guess.

  78. cincybmxlpfreak on October 29, 2011 at 11:46 am

    Omg. That’s scary. I’m sorry to hear about your friends with the brain tumors. I hope they pull through, but obviously any surgery has its risks. That sounds like a good idea. I don’t have a smart phone, nor do I have any knowledge about radiation production, etc. but I’d just like to know that I’m not harming myself while using my cell phone…maybe it’s time to go back to landlines…

  79. adiek84 on October 29, 2011 at 11:28 am

    This is definitely a great idea! I automatically switch off my phone at night or don’t put it anywhere close to me (like on the nightstand) without really thinking about it, because no matter if its radiation is harmful or not, I bet my body is better without it. There was just a large study about this issue published in the British Medical Journal “proving” that phone radiation doesn’t cause brain tumors > http://www.bmj.com/content/343/bmj.d6387.full
    Still, I’d say better safe than sorry! Studies can be wrong and do you really wanna take that risk?
    I hope that your friends will have a speedy recovery! :-(

  80. adhara9 on October 29, 2011 at 11:21 am

    Mike, you’re more likely to die of heart disease (598,607 deaths/year), lung cancer (158,105 deaths/year) or stroke (128,603) than brain cancer (14,192). Do you exercise every day? Eat lots of fruits & vegetables? Not smoke? See your doctor regularly? It’s worthwhile to make sure you do those things while you wait for Apple to install a “3G Auto-Off” mode (though the science hasn’t shown a causal relationship between cell phone radiation and cancer). PubMed has all the research articles directly from the scientists if you want to read them. Better to read the research yourself than to read other people’s interpretation of the research. Hopefully your friends are doing ok…

  81. truebluelp on October 29, 2011 at 11:13 am

    I think that’s a great idea. I tend to trust WHO more than most. I had a good friend who got testicular cancer in his right testicle which was the same side he always had his phone in his pocket. Now his doctor said he in no way could say %100 percent that his phone was the cause, but he did feel very strongly that it could have been a contributing factor. His suggestion for all men in to wear your phone on a belt clip. Doing that keeps the phone a safer distance from your body. I always carry mine in my purse. Anyway I think it’s better to be safe than sorry. I will definitely re-tweet and post this on FB.

  82. michelle2014 on October 29, 2011 at 11:04 am

    i think you are right! i know it’s possible to do this too.
    my mom is a teacher and they have technology that does this at the school.
    i think TI puts it out. it is very cool. well mike i hope someone hears what you are saying. it’s unfortunate that Steve Jobs passed. you could have suggested it to him,and it be out in stores the next week. he was a VERY talented man.

  83. bourdi on October 29, 2011 at 10:53 am

    Mike, try an Android-phone;) It switches off automatically the network if you are in your Wifi-area or you put a widget on your homescreen to turn 3G on or off.

  84. sagback on October 29, 2011 at 10:34 am

    i always sleep w/ my phone :) also keep it on mode :) bcz IF an earthquake happens I can contact under the fallen bricks :) kidding :)

    nice post mike

    and what you post here automatically comes to my FB wall :)

  85. L. on October 29, 2011 at 10:33 am

    hey Mike, my iPhone switches to wifi if i’ve turned on the setting that remembers wifi networks that i’ve previously connected to. doesn’t that mean that 3G is off already? =/

    • M Shinoda on October 29, 2011 at 2:18 pm

      No, if you see the 3G or phone icon at the top (even if the WiFi icon turns on) then your 3G is still enabled.

  86. Alexandra Nofi on October 29, 2011 at 10:27 am

    I seen tons of people walking around with the earbuds headphones plugged into their iPhones and Smartphones. I think at least when making any kinds of calls, you should use those, it will definitely put some distance between you and the phone. I mean, really the only time you’d have it up against your ear is during a phone call. All of the 3G networking and app stuff, primarily uses the touch screen, doesn’t it? You gotta figure too, if they make a new component to the iPhone, then the next version which will probably be out soon, knowing how Apple is, and the price of the iPhone will be even more outrageous than it was before.

  87. lillyhfg on October 29, 2011 at 10:27 am

    I don’t believe in this “phone-stories” anymore. After 5 years they’ll change their minds, anyway. But of course there’s still the question inside of us..”but what if..?”

    I’M JUST LIVIN MY LIFE TILL THEY COME CARRY ME AWAY! :)

  88. fredsbassett on October 29, 2011 at 10:06 am

    As I am sure other people have pointed out, that isn’t necessary. All you have to do is jailbreak your iPhone (how to do that depends on your model and iOS version, but it’s always free and usually really easy), then install SBSettings. After that, all you have to do is swipe across the status bar, tap one button, and swipe again and your 3G data is off, while keeping everything else on.
    At this point, iOS 5 can only have a “tethered” jailbreak, but I expect the un-tethered jailbreak will be released in the next few days.

  89. xxdurg on October 29, 2011 at 9:58 am

    i swear i saw a setting on my phone last night that turns it off automatically but, of course, now i can’t find it, haha.. & i have the htc rhyme

  90. kathyxx on October 29, 2011 at 9:56 am

    Excuse me for the double post,

    also Google search Andrew Wakefield, the man who faked a study (for money) showing the use of vaccinations was linked to Autism. No other scientist could reproduce his results, but Wakefield and the media blew up the results out of proportion, spreading the lie that vaccines cause autism. The journal his paper was published in later disqualified the paper, but that didn’t stop the army of paranoid parents Wakefield created, who now think there’s some sort of conspiracy from “Big Pharma”. This movement has killed children from preventable disease.

    You CANNOT trust what journalists say about science! Ever! Especially Fox. Go directly to a scientist

  91. Shay Adams on October 29, 2011 at 9:55 am

    Those photo’s are very alarming! I wonder if blutooth headsets have the same effect. Glad I don’t make a lot of phone calls, but I’m read this post on My iPhone. >.< I'd give up my cell any day if it meant protecting my brain.

  92. yomarqueslp on October 29, 2011 at 9:53 am

    I’m also worried about this issue and I like your idea, Mike! I’ll share it :)

  93. codeblue89 on October 29, 2011 at 9:52 am

    get an Android, it automatically disconnects mobile networks when WiFi is available

    • M Shinoda on October 29, 2011 at 2:35 pm

      If only I liked their phone better than my iPhone.

  94. annasz on October 29, 2011 at 9:51 am

    Maybe it’s not a major subject now, but I think it will be. The cellphone become more important, dependencia nowadays. And the signal radiation automatically follow. Good suggestion. I’ll give a RT.

  95. stoopidbunny on October 29, 2011 at 9:49 am

    SBsettings gives you toggles by putting up a drawer on top. Switch of 3G, Bluetooth, Wifi, or anything else you want right from the home screen. Jailbreaking, FTW!

  96. kathyxx on October 29, 2011 at 9:49 am

    This is actually a difficult subject as the media puts a lot of muddle into it. The best way to become an expert on the subject is to skip the media, skip the anecdotes, and go straight to the scientific white papers. The ones with all the big complicated words in them. As far as KATHYxx knows, the dangers of cell phone radiation is exaggerated by media (Media lied about vaccines/autism. The sun is a more dangerous source of radiation. AM/FM radio waves are harmless, and I think each other type of protocol are using different strengths.

    !BUT!, I am no expert in radiation. Talk to me about computer science, but otherwise, go to Google Scholar and read the abstract and conclusions

    • M Shinoda on October 29, 2011 at 2:34 pm

      This isn’t about media to me. The W.H.O. made a statement about this, which I take seriously. Besides, I would rather weigh statements by reputable international sources than dive into the internet abyss, trying to pretend I can decipher scientific papers.

  97. emzlp123 on October 29, 2011 at 9:47 am

    I’m so sorry to hear about your friends and I think it’s a good idea. For years everyone was concerned with TV mast and things of the same sort, near there homes but now every ther person has a mobile in their pockets all the time.
    I don’t see how hard it would be to do what ou suggested because, again, like you said you can turn your phone onto airplane mode but a lot of the functions hen stop working. Maybe you should use some of your ‘celeb power’ and talk to apple and other smart phone companies?
    Very interesting blog update, as always.
    Peace!

  98. kelly jean on October 29, 2011 at 9:45 am

    I just turn of Cellular Data but I know that doesn’t accomplish much. IArash- turning off 3G doesn’t stop your phone from sending and recieving harmful signals

  99. chocoinspire on October 29, 2011 at 9:45 am

    Any phone produces an enormous amount of radiation during calls, or just for updates … I do not know about iPhone safety, now I use the “ancient” SE phone…And it is very harmful…. I think it’s a good idea,if at all possible, because health is more important than any trinkets such as phone

  100. Shinoda's Army on October 29, 2011 at 9:42 am

    But, recent studies confirmed phones don’t give such a damage as they always expected. They tried the tests on 300 people.
    At this point, what can we believe? Though there are some apps that guarantee the 3G to stay off as long as you use wifi or select the option from the settings. I have a Samsung (Android) and I found the list of the radiations: it’s pretty low. But I don’t know what to believe at this point. I like the idea anyways, I’ll RT.

    • M Shinoda on October 29, 2011 at 2:27 pm

      At this point, I would rather trust the World Health Organization than private (unnamed) studies. That’s just me. Show me a link to something reputable, and we could talk.

  101. iArash on October 29, 2011 at 9:39 am

    you can just easily switch the 3g off instead of turning on the airplane mode!!!!

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