Tattoos are everywhere these days. In the US alone a staggering $1,650,500,000 is spent every year on getting tattoos with over 45 million Americans having at least one tattoo. Another thing that is ubiquitous across America is the smartphone. Nearly two thirds of americans have little mini computers in their pockets sporting fancy glass touchscreens. With touchscreens and tattoos both so popular then it seems that researchers at Saarland University are onto the winner with their latest innovative idea, iSkin.
iSkin is a very thin sensor overlay that gives you the ability to turn your whole body into a touchscreen. It is both flexible and stretchable and can be produced in different shapes and sizes so that it can be used on various parts of the body like the finger, forearm or ear.
The developers at Saarland University are hoping that iSkin will enjoy a wide range of uses saying:
“iSkin supports single or multiple touch areas of custom shape and arrangement, as well as more complex widgets, such as sliders and click wheels. Recognizing the social importance of skin, we show visual design patterns to customize functional touch sensors and allow for a visually aesthetic appearance. Taken together, these contributions enable new types of on-body devices. This includes finger-worn devices, extensions to conventional wearable devices, and touch input stickers, all fostering direct, quick, and discreet input for mobile computing.”
If iSkin catches on like its developers would like it to then the amount spent annually on tattos in the US is like to rocket past the astronomical amount already spent on them each year in the US. Watch this space.