With this particular setup, they are saying that the locked pouches are being given back to the audience member to hold on to.
I wonder if they are going to use metal detectors or just the honor system. Chapelle is concerned about people recording his material, not about disruptive phone calls. So whether patrons are not using their cell phones because they are locked away or because the audience member is hiding it may not matter to him.
I have mixed feelings about dealing with the hassle. I like to know what time it is, and I'm wondering how much pushback they would get about smart watches having to be locked away as well. I also think that the number of cell phones going off has markedly decreased over time, now that cell phones are not a novelty (and also probably more user-friendly). It used to be that a couple of phones would routinely go off during a show, but nowadays, it's usually zero, occasionally one, rarely more than that.