Wireless Illin'

3:15 PM -- If low-powered home base stations take off -- and there's a bunch of big vendors backing them now -- you know that we're going to a get a rash of stories and blogs asking if having these little radio transceivers in your house poses a health risk. (See Cisco Eyes Home Base.) If you've not heard, these gadgets, known as femtocells, are like a tiny cellular radio you put in your home to improve 3G bandwdith and coverage. So they certainly come with benefits; but could they pose a hazard to your health? As far as we know, new minature base stations are roughly the same on the risk factor scale as WiFi access points. In other words, the average microwave oven is a bigger health risk -- which won't stop folks asking the question anyway. (See Does WLAN Pose a Health Risk?)

Nonetheless, when the time comes, I won't be installing one at the bottom of my bed when it could sit over in the kitchen window. No point taking unnecessary risks, eh?

— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Unstrung

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