Wearable technology is fast becoming the buzz word of the year, with rumours of Apple starting work on the iWatch, and Google Glasses now expected to be available at the end of 2013, and retail for $1,500. But now a new product could be set to change the way we use our smart devices, and it is not a watch or a pair of glasses, it’s a ring called the NFC Ring, and it is being developed by UK inventors – John McLear and Matt Mullenweg. NFC stands for Near Field Communication, and the technology itself is nothing new, however it is only recently that it is being used in smart devices such as smartphones, tablets and Windows phones. The NFC Ring will be compatible with any NFC enabled device, and works by you programming one side of the ring with your public information, and the other side with private. The public side has a length of 30mm and the private side is 20mm long, and you programme the ring to provide details such as contact info for Facebook, Twitter, MySpace etc, any unlock procedures for your smartphone, info to launch certain websites and much more, by using the special NFC tag writing apps.
When you wear the NFC Ring, to access your public data you have the public side on top facing away, then you make a fist and bump it to the back of someone’s phone, you’ll be sharing your public information. To access the private side, simply open your palm and touch the back of a phone and your private information is accessed. The team have set a goal of £30,000 but already have received £188,432 with an astonishing 6,551 backers with 3 days to go. What we love about the NFC Ring is that you can personalise the ring completely and choose exactly what information you want to be passed onto your friends, or for public consumption. And the best thing about the ring is that is never needs charging.
If you are worried about security, the team have already looked into this matter and added another layer of inlay and placed it opposite the original inlay, which effectively solves the security issue as it creates an interference area which stops any powerful antennas being able to complete a full induction process. It also prevents people using different hands gestures to access the public or private data. The NFC Rings will be available in two sizes, the regular measuring 8mm and the larger Alpha size measuring 12mm, and will be made of steel (Titanium versions will be considered possibly in the future). The final designs have not yet been determined, but will be decided by a community vote. For anyone interested in getting involved in this project, you only have three more days but there are still pledges available. £3 will help start off the community project, but £22 will get you a regular sized ring with an app, and for £25 you get an Alpha ring. Dates for shipping are estimated at September so you won’t have to wait long.
Check out the KickStarter project for more information.