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Violight cell phone sanitizer zaps germs

Violight, which specializes in UV toothbrush sanitizers, has officially begun selling a $49.95 cell phone cleaning accessory that incorporates germicidal UV light technology that hospitals use to sterilize medical instruments.

The $49.95 Violight Cell Phone Sanitizer 'cleanses' any gadget that fits inside its chamber.
David Carnoy/CNET

In recent years, you may have seen a story or two about how toilet seats are cleaner than your cell phone. Well, there may not be an app for eliminating those teeming germs from your mobile, but Violight, a company that specializes in UV toothbrush sanitizers, has developed something called the Cell Phone Sanitizer to execute microbes.

Back in June we wrote that the $49.95 device was coming soon, and now it's officially available. Violight says it's the first UV sanitizing device designed to "eliminate up to 99.9 percent of germs and bacteria on your cell phone," as well other small electronic devices, including earbuds and Bluetooth headsets.

According to the company, the germicidal UV light (the same technology used in hospitals) kills everything from strep, e.coli, salmonella, and listeria to the H1N1 virus in five minutes. After the slaughter's over, the bulb automatically shuts off.

As I said before, I can't say I'd ever bother using anything like this (it's hard to avoid germs when you have four little kids who go to that virus breeding ground better known as school). But a unit showed up in the mail, so I stuck an iPod Touch in the "chamber," closed the hood, and let the Sanitizer do its thing.

Whether it works or not I have no idea, but germaphobes will be pleased to know that it's battery operated and portable, so they can take it with them wherever they go.

Put the hood on and the sanitation process begins. David Carnoy/CNET