Technology May 29, 2012
Japanese Phone Monitors Radiation Levels

Monitoring radiation? There's no app for that - you need a whole phone. Japanese mobile phone company Softbank just introduced a smartphone that can detect radiation levels. The phone, which will go on sale in July, includes a sensor that lets users see how much radiation they are being exposed to.

Concerns about radiation are widespread in Japan more than a year after the Fukushima crisis - demand for personal Geiger counters is so high that many manufacturers are unable to keep up, and some citizens are suspicious of government assessments of radiation risks. The L.A. Times reported in March that "many people now conduct their own radiation research. They surf the Internet and seek out podcasts that offer alternative perspectives on the dangers and what to do about them".

According to the founder and president of Softbank, Masayoshi Son, "the threat from the nuclear accident cannot be seen by the human eye and continues to be a concern for many people, especially for mothers with small children".

Along with realtime monitoring, the phone will be able to keep track of each location where a user has tested for radiation levels. No price has yet been announced.

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