New Digital Tattoos Turn Skin Into Mobile Displays

New Digital Tattoos Turn Skin Into Mobile Displays

The world's first E Ink and app controlled tattoo system has been developed - giving one the ability to have ever changing tattoos on their bodies that can be controlled from a smartphone, or just made to disappear by being turned off when one wants to be tattooless.

Technology and tattoo experts have called the technology E Ink and it has been developed by digital think tank Emerge Interactive. Although not exactly new, as prior to E Ink there had been prototypes which were less effective due to needing a constant source of "electricity", the new and improved E Ink can create a "skin screen" that can display images using a tiny amount of energy.

The process works by "subdermal bistable" pigment first being implanted just below the epidermis, creating a grayscale display "screen" along a 4-inch by 6-inch area of the forearm. This screen can then be controlled by an app via any Bluetooth compatible iPhone or Android device.

Once "implanted" the tattoo image can be changed using the app's database of tattoo art - one day a rose, the next an ancient Maori warrior motif. The only limitation is the number of designs in the data base.

The really exciting thing about the technology is that it also allows the "screen" to be used like a whiteboard or calendar for notes and memos, be synced up to show the current time and date, be used to display incoming call numbers and even SMS messages, or even the current track and artist being played on one's smartphone. The use and possibilities are virtually endless.

The E Ink technology has been trialed for six months and it is expected to be available for purchase "over the coming months", delivered as a surgery kit which can be implanted by any tattoo artist with a basic medical background.

If you're worried about the price, how about offering an advertiser a deal - display their logo on your forearm at events and at certain times of the day, in exchange for them paying for the kit and app.

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