In a welcome development, reports have indicated that mobile phones will soon be upgraded to monitor noise pollution.
Nicolas Maisonneuve of the Sony Computer Science Laboratory in Paris, France, has introduced a downloadable software app, called 'NoiseTube,' which will enhance smartphones to monitor noise pollution.
The software records any sound picked up by the phone's microphone, along with its the GPS location, which gets transmitted to NoiseTube's server.
The name of the street and the city then gets converted into a format that can be used with Google Earth, reports New Scientist.
Accordingly, locations are labeled as dangerous on the basis of noise pollution.
Andrea Iacoponi of ARPAT, an environmental protection agency based in Pisa, Italy, said: "NoiseTube could provide an extra tool to noise experts and decision makers in environmental noise management.
"It can be used to improve the accuracy of European Directive strategic noise maps."
At present only a few Sony Ericsson and Nokia cell phones can run the application.
However, the research team is working on making it compatible with all handsets.
Maisonneuve ended: "We are currently working on a method to automatically calibrate microphones."