Nokia Thinks We Need The Ability To Get Phone Alerts Via Vibrating Tattoos

Just in case you should happen to miss either incessant beeping, a loud ringtone or an insistent vibration in your pocket/purse, why not just get a tattoo that would receive alerts directly from your phone and vibrate to let you know someone has something very important to say? Nokia wants to make that a reality.

In an application filed with the U.S. patent office (via, Nokia maps out their plan for linking your permanent ink with your personal technology. The idea includes a magnetic vibrating tattoo, basically a device that has “material attachable to skin.” It’ll pick up the signal from a magnetic field and then buzz the device on the person’s skin.

Linking the device to a cell phone will allow anyone with it tattooed, taped or otherwise attached to their skin to receive any kind of alert your phone can give. Facebook notification? Vvvbbbbrttt! Email? Vvbbrrtt! Text? Bbvvvrrrvvtt! And so on.

But this technology wouldn’t just stop with your run-of-the-mill smartphone, oh no, says Nokia — you could go on and link up to your tablets, game consoles or whatever else you need to keep in touch with. We can see it now: “Hang on, my tramp stamp says my phone is ringing,” or “Ugh, my tribal design arm tattoo is saying my inbox is full.”

Vibrating Tattoo Could Send Text Alerts Straight to Your Skin [Time]


Edit Your Comment

  1. Cat says:

    I’m seeing a bright future in vibrating genital tattoos.

  2. Lethe says:

    On the bad side – Ugh. I can see my employers (who supply cell phones to a lot of the people in the office) jumping all over this.

    On the plus side – I can think of a few places I might like a vibrating tattoo, as long as I’m the only one who knew the right # to dial…

  3. eccsame says:

    What a great way to track people too!

  4. CrankyOwl says:

    I could swear William Gibson or some other sci fi writer came up with this idea years ago.

  5. catastrophegirl chooses not to fly says:

    use this technology to replace the beeping on my continuous glucose monitor [alerts that DO need to wake me up] instead of phone calls and i’m in.

    • El_Red says:

      +1 Useful application of new technology.

      However, I still suspect Jersey Shores type of people will jump all over it.

  6. redskull says:

    What happens when Nokia goes out of business? Will someone else pick up the vibrating tattoo slack, or will your ill thought out body art remain forever still?

  7. Bort says:

    what if next years model only supports vibrating ink 2.0, or you decide to buy a competitors product?

  8. Jay K. says:

    Can I get several and have different people buzz different parts of my body?

  9. Jay K. says:

    Can I get several and have different people buzz different parts of my body?

  10. framitz says:

    I don’t have and will not have any tattoos, so I guess this wouldn’t work for me.

    Next up: Injected subcutaneous capsule behind your ear to connect you to your phone. hmmm, that might actually work…. but do not want.

    • HogwartsProfessor says:

      I don’t think it’s an actual tattoo; it says “material attachable to skin.” That implies that it can be detached.

      I see it as a kind of sticker with a wireless thing in it. At least, that’s my understanding of it.

  11. cspschofield says:

    As somebody who doesn’t own a cell-phone, and doesn’t PLAN on owning one, I’m appalled. The ear-things are bad enough, with their air of “on your cell, or off your meds?”. Now we have to guess whether you’re receiving a call, or suffering from groin-pheasants?

  12. AmPriS says:

    This will be great for people who count cards at casinos

  13. smo0 says:

    I can see the TSA having a field day with this.

    Ma’am, I need you to remove that device.

    – What device?

    This…. mark on your body.

    – I can’t… it’s a tattoo.

    I’m sorry you’ll have to remove it (grabs scalpel) … I need you to follow me.

    And that’s the end of the TSA as we know it.

    On second thought, this might be a good idea.

  14. FedoraFetish says:

    Hmm, permanently attaching a metallic instrument to your skin (because metal is by far the most comfortable material to wear) that picks up radiation and is controlled by a cell phone company…sounds brilliant, what could possibly go wrong?

    • The Porkchop Express says:

      magnatized too, oh the joys you could experience if you get knocked out in an accident and the hospital starts running tests.

      Wouldn’t something happen in an MRI?

  15. NumberSix says:

    So Nokia is “the Beast?”

  16. AndroidHumanoid says:

    Oh to be an MRI tech when this becomes reality..

    • t2fastspin says:

      Agreed! It’s bad enough that some people can’t go without their phone for 1/2 hour, and try to sneak it in to the scan room. Yes, I will see it!!!

      • The Porkchop Express says:

        would bad things happen to this in the MRI? I would think there would be some pain or something.

        • t2fastspin says:

          Possibly. There would be a potential for heating and a burn of the skin.

        • Free Legal Advice! says:

          Mythbusters did an episode on magnetic tattoos several years ago. If I recall, they concluded that tattoos didn’t contain enough ferous material to interrupt MRIs, however a cell-equiped tattoo may be another matter entirely.

  17. natebum says:

    i wonder how a person’s body would react to being hit by radio waves 24/7.
    soon the tattoo will be changeable by carrier and include advertisements from “Property of James” to “real estate Properties in James county”

  18. Dallas_shopper says:

    Not only no but hell no.

  19. Velifer says:

    It’s good that Nokia is thinking ahead and planning for its downward spiral to patent troll in the year 2075.

  20. gman863 says:

    Oh, I think I have a phone call…

    Oh yes! YES, YES, YES!!! OH, YES, YES, YES, YES!!!!

    I’ll have whatever she’s having