Oahu drivers have two days until cell phone ban goes into effect - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Oahu drivers have two days until cell phone ban goes into effect

Eva Kubo Eva Kubo
Ed Maruyama Ed Maruyama

By Leland Kim - bio | email

HONOLULU (KHNL) -  Just two more days to cell phone freedom.  Here on Oahu, starting Wednesday, cell phone use while driving will be banned and only hands-free devices will be allowed.

There are several options to go hands free.  They can get a speakerphone that clips on your car's visor, or a common wireless Bluetooth headset.

You can buy them at any place that sells cell phones.  Whatever you choose, you have to have one by Wednesday if you want to talk while driving.

Wireless headset devices are ringing up tons of sales, as days of handheld cell phone use while driving are numbered.  Eva Kubo is looking to buy one and she knows exactly which features she wants.

"First convenience, then comfort," said Kubo, who lives in Kaneohe. "I was concerned about how to charge it up, so those three things."

This is going to be her second wireless headset.

"I had one but it was quiet uncomfortable so I stopped using it," said Kubo. "So now I have to come look for a new one."

Wireless Bluetooth headsets are becoming more popular and prices are coming down.

"Bluetooth utilizes wireless frequencies that allows short range pairing of devices so a Bluetooth headset," said Ed Maruyama, managing director of AT&T Hawaii. "If you buy, for instance, one manufacturer, those are actually compatible with any phones.  Just because you get a Motorola phone doesn't necessarily mean you have to get a Motorola Bluetooth device."

So where does the name Bluetooth come from?  It's named after a 10th century Danish king named Blatand who unified various tribes in Denmark into one kingdom.  That's what Bluetooth does. It brings together different devices under one universal technology.

And a new law brings people into stores to buy these hands free devices.

"I think it's good because I've been frustrated with people using the phone and not paying attention to traffic," said Kubo. "It's a safety issue, so I think it's a good law."

Again the new law goes into effect Wednesday.  And Honolulu Police Department says, there's not going to be a grace period.  So make sure you get one of these things either Monday or Tuesday if you don't have one.

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