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Research shows potential risk in using AirPods

Juana Garcia/The Cougar

Juana Garcia/The Cougar

When Apple released AirPods in 2016, the wireless headphones had been immediately popularized and pushed millions of people to hop on the trend to purchase them. However, with recent research from scientists announcing the growing risks AirPods can cause, students discuss if these headphones are worth it.

Scientists are concerned with the use of electromagnetic radiation emitted through Bluetooth devices and have been pushing for stricter regulations on AirPods. In 2011, the World Health Organization announced in a report that EMF radiation may cause cancerous health problems. 

Airpods are wireless headphones that use Bluetooth technology to connect directly to your Apple device. Bluetooth uses a 2.4 GHz ISM band which is also known as the channel that many devices use to operate.

This technology grows concerns as AirPods operate with radio waves, and by putting this device in your ear, these waves can pass through your ear canal and the body. 

Many college students aren’t aware of the risks AirPods can cause. However, strategic communications and media production freshman Torie Regina was.

Regina knew how AirPods worked by transmitting waves into the ear and body, which discouraged her upon purchasing them. Ultimately, Regina decided to purchase the headphones due to convenience, she said.

“The first time I tried them on, my head started hurting within 20 minutes of using them,” said Regina. “Because I vaguely understood its side effects, I kept restricting their use.”

College students in particular use AirPods regularly for convenience in getting around campus and attending online classes. History freshman Mackenzie Drago finds AirPods to be essential for concentration, especially when studying. 

“I think it’s important to have a way to cancel out people or listen to music if it helps you concentrate,” said Drago. “I kind of have to keep using them due to them having noise cancellation to calm my anxiety.”

Although scientists are actively concerned about the potential risks AirPods can have, not enough information is known on EMF radiation or Bluetooth devices to conclude what exactly AirPods can cause for the body long term. 

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