For anyone addicted to their Android or iPhone—pretty much everyone—not glimpsing at that four-inch screen for the duration of an entire meal can feel like a staggering feat. Now, one restaurant is aiming to stop mealtime tweeting and texting altogether with one foolproof preventative measure: locking up customers' phones.
At London's Tea Terrace Restaurants and Tea Rooms, distracting devices can be tucked away in the "phonetentiary," a small, combination-locked box at the table, which will put those push notifications out of sight and (hopefully) out of mind. The combinations to each phonetentiary are known only by staff, so diners aren't able to suddenly succumb to the urge to snap photos of their meals.
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The boxes, which are disguised as books as to not ruin the tea time ambiance, will also be available for customers to purchase and test out on their own friends and family members.