I have to report some strange behaviour exhibited by my mouse when it is near a cell phone*.

When I put my cell phone near my screen and my computer speakers (and mouse), the phone occasionally sends a signal. This doesn't always mean that I am receiving a text message or that I am receiving an incoming call. I think it's just a "see-I-am-still-here-and-alive" signal of some sort.

Well, you are probably all aware that when this signal occurs you can hear a kind of ticking sounds coming from the speakers and the monitor flickers a little with lines, as if it was in tune with the incoming/outgoing signal.

The strangest thing occurs though, when there's a incoming/outgoing signal it (sometimes) causes a left click of the mouse button. I can see the computer reacting as though I actually physically left clicked.

I have a cheap optical Logitech mouse, with cord, and I have a Samsung SGH-v206 phone. I haven't had time to do any substantial testing as to when it actually occurs and if it also causes a right click.

It's certainly very strange...

*cell phone (US) = mobile phone (UK) = GSM (Belgium).

bob says:

Nextel's have a tendency to interfere with mix boards whereas Verizon phones (LG manuf) do not.

lidge_34 says:

I have a Motorola photo on Cingular, and I notice weird things with the speakers in the living room from time to time. But nothing as odd as it causing clicks on my computer.

dcormier says:

The sheilding on the hardware will be a big factor here. I don't expect that cell phones to have much shielding on it since they manufacturer wants the best signal they can get. However, getting a nicer mouse may be a good solution.

I use a Logitech MX Duo wireless mouse and keyboard and have no problems even though I often put my cell phone (a Nokia 3600-something) on my desk right next to the mouse and keyboard.

Speakers and monitors with better shielding, or an LCD monitor, can resolve the issues there. I have a decent set of Klipsch GMX D5.1 speakers for my computer, and the only way I here any interference from a cell phone is if I go out of my way to put the phone about 3" away from a speaker. On the other hand, my girlfriend has a less expensive pair of speakers and I could have the phone in my pocket and be sitting her computer chair and I'll hear a loud click when my phone pings the network, even if the speakers are turned all the way down. However, her phone (a nicer Motorola) doesn't cause that to happen.

The only time my phone causes interference on my monitor (21" Trinitron CRT) is if I have it on the monitor stand leaning against the monitor and it rings. The usual cell network ping doesn't have any noticable effect.

Wirehead says:

I've noticed NexTel phones are a complete pain in the ass as far as interference. In one case one of them managed to make a set of portable speakers for my laptop make clicking noises while TURNED OFF and UNPLUGGED. The signal from the phone was apparently strong enough when placed within a couple of feet of the rats nest of wires to induce a current in them and make noise. My wife and I both have Sprint (CDMA) phones and neither of us have ever witnessed any interference of any kind with monitors (CRT or LCD) or speakers. My phone is made by Audiovox/Toshiba and hers is a Samsung.

My $0.004 (damned exchange rates).

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