Artists Using New Device That Locks Concertgoers Phone from Use

Device physically locks up phone from use while in concert perimeter

In today’s round-up of new devices with dropped-vowel names, Yondr is the latest and greatest in technology prohibition.

Everyone’s been there, you’ve just spent a quarter of your rent to see your favorite artist when you find yourself watching the entire show through the lens of the guy in front of you’s crappy iPhone 4s. Yondr (named after the phrase “Over Yonder”) was designed to prevent shutter-happy concertgoers from waving around their phones all night, and to actually enjoy being in that moment with their own eyes.

Artists who sign up to use the device will have booths set up at the concert entrance. As concertgoers enter, they’ll be given a small black pouch and be asked to place their phones inside. The device is proximity based, so while they are in the venue the pouch will be automatically locked. The “Phone-free” zones will be determined prior to the event by the artist. Need to make an emergency call/check your Bumble matches? Head outside of the venue and it unlocks.


“We think smartphones have incredible utility, but not in every setting,” as it says on the company’s website. “In some situations, they have become a distraction and a crutch—cutting people off from each other and their immediate surroundings.”

Comedian Dave Chapelle is one of the first artists to sign up for the device, who will be using Yondr at his thirteen upcoming shows. Anyone attending will have to agree to use the device while entering.

Snapping photos and video on smartphones and iPads at shows isn’t just annoying for concertgoers, it can be hell for the artist. Filming performances is not only distracting, but sometimes infringes on that artist’s copyright. But all in all, put your phone away at shows. It’s distracting to everyone around you, and also because you don’t want this to happen to you (skip to 4:00):

What do you think? Let us know in the comments.