Nissan revisits 180-year-old tech to tackle smartphone distraction
Nissan is trialling Victorian-era technology to reduce smartphone distraction at the wheel.
Built into the armrest of the Juke crossover, the Nissan Signal Shield is a prototype compartment lined with a Faraday cage, an invention dating back to the 1830s.
Once a mobile device is placed in the compartment and the lid closed, the Nissan Signal Shield creates a ‘silent zone’, blocking all the phone’s incoming and outgoing cellular, Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connections. However, drivers can still listen to their own music, with wired connections through USB or auxiliary ports still working.
The concept is intended to provide drivers with a choice about eliminating smartphone distractions.
According to the 2016 annual report on motoring by the RAC, the number of drivers who illegally used mobile phones rose to 31% in 2016 from 8% in 2014.
RAC road safety spokesman Pete Williams greeted the research, saying: “The Nissan Signal Shield is a good example of a technology that can help drivers be phone smart. For those who can’t avoid the temptation, this simple but pretty clever tech gives them a valuable mobile-free zone.”