htc 10 by autom3otives (26 of 28)

We’ve all been told a lot of things that may or may not be true over the course of our lives: don’t swim for an hour after eating, drink water upside down to cure hiccups and cell phones cause brain cancer. However, a new 30-year study out of Australia claims that there is no correlation between increasing usage of cell phones and incidences of brain cancer.

See also:

Are smartphones really harmful to our health?

May 15, 2015

The study, run by the University of Sydney, looked at 34,000 men and women diagnosed with brain cancer between 1982-2012 and national mobile phone usage data between 1987-2012. The study found that age-adjusted incidences of brain cancer in those aged between 20-84 (per 100,000 people) were stable in women and had only slightly increased in men over the 30-year period.

back to school gadgets smartphones headphones Shutterstock

Mobile phone usage has increased from less than 10% in 1993 to more than 95% today. The only group that showed any significant increase in cancer rates was the 70+ age group. But the increase in this population began in 1982, long before cell phones were introduced in Australia. The research proposed the increase was likely attributable to improvements in diagnostic detection. The researchers concluded that “we found no increase in brain cancer incidence compatible with the steep increase in mobile phone use.

The study found no increase in brain cancer incidence compatible with the steep increase in mobile phone use.

While this study disproves the incendiary claims made for decades now over the links between cell phones usage and brain cancer, another recent study claimed that cell phone usage exceeding 15 hours per month can increase risk of brain cancer threefold. For every study claiming one thing there is another claiming the opposite. So until multiple studies definitively prove there is no connection, please take the cautious route. And stay out of the water after eating, OK?

You can read the full study in The International Journal of Cancer Epidemiology, Detection and Prevention.

Do you think there’s a connection? How many hours do you spend on your phone per month?

Kris Carlon
Kris Carlon is a Senior Editor at Android Authority. He is a half-British Australian who lives in Berlin, travels a lot and is always connected to a laptop, phone, smartwatch or tablet (and occasionally a book).
  • s2weden2000

    look again in 10 years time when the real 30 years has passed with gsm phones…

    • Diskus1

      But some claimed increased risk already in the 90s! Are you saying they are wrong as it takes 30 years for any effect?

      • s2weden2000

        in the 80´s the phones were analog..more interesting would be 1992-2022 or more precise 1997-2027 and never forget to ask yourself where did the money for the research come from = funding

        • Diskus1

          That’s backwards. The 80s analogue mobile phones used much higher output than GSM/3G/4G. the 80s phones could use up to 8W, while GSM etc are maxed at 2W and generally output only a fraction of that. Radiation should not be a problem anymore, if it ever was in the 80s.

          • s2weden2000

            Yeah..and FM radiostations send out thousands off watts and so what..the signals are not the same..analog vs digital ..look it up

          • Brad Fortin

            The effects are the same, it’s all harmless non-ionizing radiation.

          • DKBNYC

            How about GMO’s. Harmless or a disaster waiting to happen?

          • Brad Fortin

            That’ll depend on each modification.

            If it’s a GMO like golden rice, which helps combat Vitamin A deficiency, it’s harmless as far as tests and studies can show.

            If it’s a GMO that causes a plant to create more naturally-occurring pesticides or to resist additional external pesticides it could have negative effects on health under the right (or wrong) circumstances.

    • Brad Fortin

      And in 10 years when they’ve still found no correlation, will you be telling us to look again in another 10 years?

      • s2weden2000

        no, if you read the comment again slower you´ll see what i mean

  • Oussama Zinneddine

    that amazing

  • Oussama Zinneddine

    hey guys i am desperate and i don’t have a phone i use my mother’s ,yes I am desperate so please pick me as a winner of the lg g5

    • Hugo Oliveira


  • Oussama Zinneddine


  • DW Duck

    I rarely hold my phone to my ear. I normally use a Bluetooth headset or speaker phone.

    • LethalLunatic

      I have bad experience from a bluetooth headset, it gave me a massive headache every time I used it, when I stopped it disappeared. Don’t have this problem with dect headsets or by holding the phone on my ear.

      • DW Duck

        Have you tried other bluetooths? I’ve never heard of this before. I have around 5 different ones that I can use but normally just use a stereo headset or a single one.

        • LethalLunatic

          Now that I realize, I did have an older stereo bluetooth headset back in 2008/2009 or so and I did not experience this sensation at all. Hopefully it was just the one “faulty” headset.


  • Diskus1

    What happened to all the people who were allergic to elictricity!? Surely they must all have died from their allergies considering how impossible it is to avoid electricity today…

  • Andrew White

    I remember reading about a study conducted in Sweden some 8 years ago and they found that exposure to this low level radiation for prolonged periods did in fact cause brain tumours in mice.
    Sorry I can’t be more specific.
    The further away from the cell tower, the harder our phone has to work to receive the signal.
    I’m assuming mobile devices now offer a higher degree of protection over what was around then.
    I would like to see though, a signal strength and direction indicator included on the notification bar on every mobile device. so at the very least we can avoid any ‘potentially’ harmful microwaves from passing through the grey matter.

  • aaloo

    This is a retrospective case series. It doesn’t “prove” or “disprove” anything. It can only suggest association or lack of association. There is a big difference between association and causality.

  • SilentPatriot

    So headphones are now responsible? Wired or wireless?

  • rswhitmarsh

    Here we go again..

  • phatmanXXL

    Mobile phones don’t cause brain cancer, hipsters do.

  • Andris Botos

    Well, I don’t really think it can cause cancer but if it can I have an idea, I’ve heard that it only causes cancer because of the cellular network’s radio waves thing so what I’d do is that I’d put my sim card into my old phone and use my primary phone to access my SMS-es and maybe the calls too(?) with internet and ta-daa I solved the problem or it’s not that easy, is it?

  • LethalLunatic

    Maybe not cancer but overusing might actually fry your brains :) I remember using a bluetooth headset a while back, it gave me a massive headache after each use, similar to a migraine! As soon as I stopped using that I never had any of that anymore. Just speaking from personal experience. with an in car bluetooth kit I never have this issue but who knows what other hazards it has on the body without our knowledge.

    • zeth006

      You might wanna read up on how bluetooth actually works. You’re not that far off from the same crowd that complains about cellphone towers causing cancer while jamming away at their smartphones hours a day.

      • LethalLunatic

        I know what you’re on about.. I’ve seen the forums online from others.

        Please read the above comment. When I had the headset on for 3 days for 4 to 5 hours straight I had chamber headaches after each day. I didn’t know what was happening to my head as I never experienced something like that. And it went on for hours. After that I paid attention to what has “changed” and the only thing that changed was that I started using that headset. After I stopped using it this sensation never re-occurred again.


        • Diskus1

          You headache was most likely from the physical effects of wearing it. Not the radio signals.

          • LethalLunatic

            The headset is very lightweight and actually comfortable to wear. When switched off I did not experience the same sensation. I’ve also not had this with none bluetooth headsets (dect technology) used in plantronics headsets. I might have had a faulty headset but cannot confirm this as I have never used one since.

    • Brad Fortin

      “I remember using a bluetooth headset a while back, it gave me a massive headache after each use”

      “with an in car bluetooth kit I never have this issue”

      Sounds to me like your headache had more to do with the headset than the technology it was using, since the same technology in a different form factor didn’t have the same effect. Do non-Bluetooth headsets have the same effect on you? Maybe it was just the headset being uncomfortable.

      • LethalLunatic

        I’ve only had it with an old samsung bluetooth headset. I never experienced it with dect headsets using them between 4.5 to 6 straight hours every day for 2 to 3 years. Since it is directly on my head I assume it has a different affect than something not directly on my head. Just saying it’s my personal experience.

  • JDMillest

    next thing you know it, breaking news!!! mobile can cause heart attack. then breaking new!!! it doesnt after study shows. hahaa

  • Sean Bear

    its like putting your head into a microwave. best to use headphones or put it on speaker.

    • Brad Fortin

      Microwaves only heat up water, they don’t cause cancer.

      • Sean Bear

        the brain is made up of about 75 percent water

        • Brad Fortin

          So the water will heat up. It won’t cause cancer.

          • DKBNYC

            Um, yeah. Heated brains. At least it’s not cancer.

          • Brad Fortin

            If you think it’s a good idea to put your head in a microwave and heat your brain up to a boil then congratulations, you may win a Darwin Award.

          • Diskus1

            He never stated that, just that it won’t give you cancer.

          • Brad Fortin

            Putting your head in a functional microwave is a bad idea no matter the outcome.

          • DDD

            Yea, because the amount of energy a phone gives off is even close to the amount a microwave gives off.

  • Mohamed Salim

    Only if it’s think cell phones cause cancer it’s not true and this study further proves it

  • Randy

    It was the same with smoking tobacco, wasn’t it?