New Tech Turns Your Arm Skin Into A 'Touchpad'

What a time to be alive.

05/09/2016 09:50 am ET

A team of scientists have developed a new technology that can make the skin on your arm and hand act like a touchpad for a smartwatch.

The technology, known as the Skintrack, was developed by the Futures Interfaces Group, a research lab at Carnegie Mellon University.

It requires the user to wear a ring and a sensor that is attached to the smartwatch strap. The sensor have four electrodes, which are used to receive the high-frequency electrical signals emitted by the ring when the finger touches the skin, in order to calculate the exact position of the finger.

The technology allows the user to swipe and tap his or her arm to interact with the smartwatch, and even allows the user to paint a picture on the arm. The technology also goes beyond the limitations of a small smartphone screen by allowing the user to drag the apps off the watch and place them on the entire arm. Skintrack includes hot key commands, allowing the user to simply write an ‘S’ on the arm to silence an incoming call.

According to the Verge, there are no concrete commercial plan for the technology. The team is working on how to supply constant power to the ring and to keep a steady signal when the body is in constant motion. Meanwhile, the team stressed that the technology poses no harm to the human body.

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