2012
12.19

The M2M world is filled with amazing products and solutions that stretch the boundaries of what is possible. But every once and a while I learn about a new technology that makes me stop and say “That’s really cool.” I recently came across a project by Ericsson that fell into this category.

M2M is all about data transfer. Whether it’s wired or wireless, information is transmitted from one place to another. But what if the transfer happened using neither wires nor a common wireless standard? What if we were the conduits?

Ericsson is working on what it calls capacitive coupling as part of its Connected Me project. The idea is to use the human body as part of a data transfer network. Ericsson says the body acts as an electrical circuit, allowing for the transmission of data to and from a mobile device the person is in contact with. In essence, the body functions as the cable. For instance, if you had a device like a smartphone in your pocket, you could possibly transmit data from that device to another person by shaking hands with them.

On its Website, Ericsson says in addition to simplicity, capacitive coupling would add a more personal element to many daily interactions. Imagine being able to send someone a photo by giving the person a high five. Or we could potentially unlock a door or log on to a computer simply by touching them.

I love this idea because it removes complexity from life and makes everyday tasks seamless. I would much rather touch the top of my computer than go through a cumbersome logging-on process. Of course, a device is still necessary, such as smartphone in one hand that actually contains the passwords and other information. But by putting all the data transfer in a touch, the complexity is moved behind the scenes.

When we think of actually using the body as a connected object, it drives home the idea that everything is truly becoming connected. Your data may soon flow through your fingers.

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