This bar in Hove uses Faraday cage to block mobile phone signals

Thanks to different social media apps, we are so addicted to our smartphones that we prefer to communicate with our loved ones, friends and relatives on our mobile phone instead of having a face to face conversation with them.

Steve Tyler, who owns the cocktail bar, Gin Tub in Hove, East Sussex, UK, has tried a novel way to break this way of communication by blocking mobile phone signals. He has built his very own Faraday cage around the pub to block mobile phone signals from entering into the walls and ceiling of the building. Tyler who blames social media for “killing pubs” has tried this method in an attempt to force his customers to actually talk to other instead of just staring at social media all night.

A Faraday cage or Faraday shield is an enclosure used in order to block electric fields. It is formed by conductive material or by a mesh of such materials.

“It’s not a perfect system, this is not a combat class” Tyler explained. “I just wanted to spend the evening in the bar, not being distracted by their phones.”

Tyler said he wanted to force “people to interact in the real world” and remember how to socialise.

“If the person you are with goes to the bathroom, the problem with mobiles is they insulate you from talking to other people,” he said.

“I just wanted people to enjoy a night out in my bar, without being interrupted by their phones,” he said. “So rather than asking them not to use their phones, I stopped the phones working. I want you to enjoy the experience of going out.”

The tables at Tyler’s bar feature old-style phones for drinkers to call for another round or chat to people on other tables.

Speaking about the Faraday cage he added: “It’s silver foil in the walls and it’s copper mesh. And it’s not the perfect system, it’s not military grade.”

However, social media experts warned that the move would not attract younger drinkers to the East Sussex bar.

Social media expert, Zoe Cairns, ZC Social Media, said: “Mobile phones are every part of our life now and if we go into a bar, a club and we are looking for our phones, it does take away that socialising aspect of it.

“But I do believe [the idea] is going to isolate that particular generation.”

Although electric jamming devices are illegal a Faraday cage is not. Tyler claimed use of the cage was permitted under the 2006 Wireless Telegraphy Act, unlike phone mobile jammers, which transfer their own signal to block a handset accessing its base station.

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