‘Digital Tattoos’ Could Be a Convenient Way to Unlock Your Phone

‘Digital Tattoos’ Could Be a Convenient Way to Unlock Your Phone

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‘Digital Tattoos’ Could Be a Convenient Way to Unlock Your Phone

One cellular company is pitching a new way to unlock phones without having to touch any buttons. But it means users will have to get a tattoo — kind of.

Motorola is pitching a digital tattoo as a time-saving solution — but it has to be replaced every five days (Image source: YouTube).

Motorola is pitching a “digital tattoo” as a time-saving and security solution, claiming the average human might waste up to nine hours a year unlocking their phone.

“The average person unlocks their phone 39 times per day. At an average of 2.3 seconds to unlock a device,” the company says in a video. “It is so cumbersome that 35 percent of users don’t lock their phone.”

If you are tired of “wasting” so many precious seconds tapping in a password or swiping your combination, this might be up your alley. But don’t get swept up by the hype: The technology is less than revolutionary.

For the tattoo, Motorola employs a technique that is several years old, using NFC tags to create the key components of the system: NFC tags are an application of radio frequency identification technology, but unlike most RFIDs — which make an effort to give a long reading range — NFC  deliberately limits this range  to within roughly an inch, or even touching the tag. Motorola and Samsung have  previously pitched  the use of NFC tags for phones through clips to ease the unlocking process.

VivaLnk, Motorola’s creative partner for the digital tattoo concept, did provide a unique twist: It embedded NFC tags into what is essentially a sticker that can be applied to the skin, much like a Band-Aid, but with an extended life — closer to that of a nicotine patch.

Then, you simply touch your phone to the digital tattoo and — voilà — your phone is unlocked.

“VivaLnk’s breakthrough eSkin technology has made it possible for us to create thin, flexible electronics that are adhesive, inexpensive, and disposable, and can communicate with […]