Ideal Conceal: Gun that looks like smartphone to hit the market this summer
The concept is called "Ideal Conceal."
Fox 45 talked to the creator of the gun, and with former police and CCW experts who said they wouldn't touch the weapon.
Ideal Conceal CEO Kirk Kjellberg demonstrates the transformer-like gun in videos posted on the company's website.
Kjellberg said he created it after an incident at a restaurant in his home state of Minnesota and wanted a better way to conceal.
"I just decided there's gotta be a better way to carry," Kjellberg said, "and I was just looking around and noticed everyone had a smartphone, so why not make a pistol that would look like that?"
Kjellberg said they spent a year engineering it and got approval from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
"As long as it has rifle barrel and cannot be fired in closed position and they will classify it as a pistol," Kjellberg said.
At SimTrainer Indoor Range and Training Center, Jeff Pedro says, "I can't speak for all others but I wouldn't touch it with a 10-foot pole."
Pedro served as a police officer in Kettering for 25 years and has been a firearms instructor for 30 years.
About the Ideal Conceal cellphone gun, he said, "Overall, my professional opinion is it’s just a bad idea from a safety perspective, and also from an access perspective. The inability to get it out, get it functional in a rapid situation would be extremely difficult."
Fox 45 asked Pedro if the way it looks, concealed as a "smartphone," could be problematic for police.
"I think there's potential that some people in the underworld, criminals might get that and think they, they're going to try to dupe or try to disguise the gun that way," Pedro said, "But police aren't going to - if the gun were to be released, police officers would be alerted to it and they'd pretty much be checking any cellphone that resembled the size and shape of that particular device."
Kjellberg said he has the transformation down to seconds, and said his company has also consulted with police officers about it.
"It would be easier to shoot someone in a nefarious way with a regular pistol than it would be with ours," Kjellberg said.
Pedro said he knows larger gun manufacturers have tried similar concepts in the past that have failed, but Ideal Conceal is based on crowdfunding.
Kjellberg said they have some orders to fill first before the guns will be mass produced and sold to dealers to be sold to the public.
Public sale could happen by the end of the summer, Kjellberg said.
Kjellberg also said they have taken extra steps to make sure the gun is detected by X-ray machines, to prevent it from slipping through any security checks.
He said the gun will retail around $500.