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Mar 20, 2012
Nokia's ferromagnetic ink creates vibrating magnetic skin tattoos as mobile device alerts
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Nokia has recently filed a patent to the US Patent and Trademark Office regarding the innovation of tattooing, stamping or spraying "ferromagnetic" material onto a user's skin and then pairing it with a mobile device. Cambridge-based Zoran Radivojevic is listed as the leader of this invention, which suggests different vibrations could be used to create a range of alerts and a magnetic marking could be attached to either a user's arm, abdominal area, finger or fingernail. The file says that possible alerts include basic notifications of low battery, received message, received call, etc. It also suggests that the magnetized marking could be used as an identity check; by picking a certain shape the user could create a "specific magnetic impedance." Nokia is far from the only technology firm investigating new uses for haptic -- or touch -- feedback, but its idea stands out for seeking to enhance touch feedback by permanently, or at least semi-permanently, marking the user’s body.

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