A new ringtone could make mobiles much more discreet, with the only sign someone is using their phone is that they’re scratching their arm.
Nokia has applied for a US patent for a new technology where a magnetic tattoo on a phone user’s arm would produce a tingling feeling when the phone rings.
The system uses magnetic material in tattoo ink, which it causes to “vibrate” in response to signals sent out by a phone, providing a discreet alert that’s impossible to ignore.
Nokia says the tattoo could offer single and multiple pulses to signal different things, such as arriving messages, missed calls or warnings that the phone’s battery is running low.
The tattoos could also “ring” as an alarm or to remind users of a meeting. The technology is dependent on mobile phones that could send out magnetic pulses to order.
The patent application is for a “layer” of material that would detect a magnetic signal from a phone, then transfer vibrations into the skin.
The technology would extend today’s vibration feedback – known as “haptics” – where a phone vibrates to tell you it’s running out of batteries or that someone is calling.
As mobile technology takes off, perhaps you can take inspiration from Nokia and develop your own idea?