During the last few years, we have been witness to the way electronic devices have been increasing in importance for all people. It is very difficult to find someone today who is not using some sort of social network. Furthermore, with the popularization of low-cost smartphones by companies like Huawei, HTC, and even Samsung with their lower-end models, almost anyone can afford to have a smartphone.
Statistics do not lie. According to Forbes, an average Mexican spends 730 hours a year using only social networks. This adds up to almost 2 hours a day – and most use is through a cellphone. It has become so common to see someone walking with their cell phone in hand, even though it is not always in use, it is not difficult to imagine the next step in technological evolution: why not make your smartphone a part of your hand?
It may sound very futuristic, but this technology could become available as soon as in a few years with the research MIT has developed with Microsoft. The team is creating an “intelligent” temporary tattoo connected to a smartphone that will send and receive different types of data.
For example, touching this “tattoo” in a specific place will lower or raise the volume of a song, skip to the next one, or answer a call. It will also be able to send information such as body temperature or heart rate to specialize applications on a smartphone to keep a record, or store information such as public transportation passes, or movie tickets, or banking information such as account numbers – this will eliminate the need to present physical tickets or plastic banking cards when making a purchase.
Applying the temporary tattoo will be as easy as applying a stamp, and as technology advances, the processor will get smaller, cheaper, and more powerful. The mind behind the idea, Cindy Hsin-Liu Kao believes that “someday putting customizable interfaces on the skin will be as easy as putting on makeup or moisturizer.”
Even though all the functions of a smartphone can’t be completely replaced, a temporary tattoo could become the new “hands-free” technology. Furthermore, with the popularization of wireless headsets and the improvement of voice assistants like Siri and Cortana – it’s not difficult to imagine that in the future we may only need to use our actual cellphone screen to see images or videos…which is also disputable in the case of Google Glasses deciding to return.
Would you be willing to use this type of technology?