Monday, March 10, 2008

Unique Business Idea---Data travels through the user's clothing

Telecom giant Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corp. (NTT) is planning a commercial launch of a system to enter rooms that frees users from the trouble of rummaging in their pockets or handbags for ID cards or keys.

It uses technology to turn the surface of the human body itself into a means of data transmission.

As data travels through the user's clothing, handbag or shoes, anyone carrying a special card can unlock the door simply by touching the knob or standing on a particular spot without taking the card out.

"In everyday life, you're always touching things. Even if you are standing, you are stepping on something," research engineer Mitsuru Shinagawa told AFP.

"These simple touches can result in communication," said Shinagawa, senior research engineer at the company's NTT Microsystem Integration Laboratories.

He said future applications could include a walk-through ticket gate, a cabinet that opens only to authorised people and a television control that automatically chooses favourite programmes.

The system also improves security. It ensures that only drivers can open their cars by touching the doors if the keys are in their pockets, not people around them.

NTT has already developed technology that allows swapping data as heavy as motion pictures through a handshake, although it has not been put into commercial use.

NTT Electronics Corp., a group company, plans to start sales of the room-entry system in the coming months, probably in the spring, said NTT business creation official Toshiaki Asahi.

It will be the world's first commercial application of human body communication using electric fields, rather than sending electric currents into the human body, according to NTT.

"There is demand for hands-free entry as there are workplaces where you always have your hands occupied or can't touch things for hygiene or medical reasons. In some factories it's simply dangerous to dangle something from your neck," Asahi said.

The price is yet to be announced but will be "a bit pricier" than the conventional IC card system, he said, adding the group expects to start only with a limited market.

Full Text:

No comments: