Apple’s plan to eliminate a jack for corded headsets and require the use of their wireless AirPods has caused some safety concerns. Joel M. Moskowitz, PhD, a director at the School of Public Health, University of California, Berkeley addressed the issue. He explained that there is not yet sufficient research on the BlueTooth technology used for the pods, writing: “Why would anyone insert microwave-emitting devices in their ears near their brain when there are safer ways to use a cell phone? I recommend the use of corded headsets or hands-free use of cell phones, not wireless earbuds.”
An article in the Los Angeles Times, “No, Apple’s new AirPods won’t give you cancer, experts say” emphasizes that using AirPods is at least much safer than putting a cell phone directly to your ear.
UCLA epidemiologist Leeka I. Kheifets said a renewed focus on developing convenient wireless headphones might also drive more people to use them. That would be “a positive development” if it draws people away from putting a powerful phone to their ears, she said.
“We haven’t done all we need to do in terms of looking at this technology’s health effects and we need to do more,” Kheifets said. “It’s worth it to be cautious, and part of being cautious is to use some kind of earpiece. And exposure from the Bluetooth device would be very, very low.”
The bottom line is, as stated above, “We haven’t done all we need to do in terms of looking at this technology’s health effects and we need to do more.” Until then, when you have a choice, Dr. Moskowitz recommends corded over BlueTooth. He also urges users to keep their cell phones away from the body and limit the length of calls.