Abdul-Aziz al-Aseeri, a 25-year-old computer science teacher, said he tells his students that Bluetooth technology can be misused.
“I warn them of the dangers of having pictures of their mothers and sisters ending up in the phones of their classmates,” he said.
Animated cartoons doing belly dances, dreamy Arabic songs and sappy, sentimental messages are also popular.
“Last night I sent an angel to watch over you, but he came back soon,” said one message.
Their Bluetooth-enabled mobile phones rested on the table next to the remnants of a dinner of club sandwiches and fries.
“I’ve been using Bluetooth since it came out last year.
The restaurant, like all Riyadh eateries, has taken precautions to prevent its male and female diners from seeing or contacting each other.
Circular white walls surround each table in the family section, open only to women alone or women accompanied by close male relatives. Yet despite the barriers, the men and women flirt and exchange phone numbers, photos and kisses.
They elude the mores imposed by the kingdom’s puritanical Wahhabi version of Islam — formulated in the 18 century device in their mobile phones: the wireless Bluetooth technology that permits users to connect without going through the phone company.
“It’s more fun coming to a restaurant these days,” said Mona, 21, as her two friends giggled.
Some are more suggestive, like “nice to touch” and “Saudi gay club.” Users then click on a name to communicate with that person.
Panic over pics The phenomenon has started to receive attention in the media, especially after stories appeared saying women were photographing female guests in revealing evening gowns at weddings — which are segregated — and circulating them to friends by Bluetooth.
We’re always looking for new things to add a spark to life,” Reem, 24, told The Associated Press.