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Nokia applies for patent of vibrating tattoo technology

Nokia looks into phone-to-tattoo connectivity for the future.
Nokia looks into phone-to-tattoo connectivity for the future.
Geishaboy500 - Flickr

Whether you've seen enough Futurama to crave a talking tattoo, no matter how rude, or you're just waiting for futuristic technology to change the face of tattooing, Nokia's recent patent application may hint toward the direction modern tattooing could take. The Wall Street Journal reports that the Finnish phone company recently applied for a U.S. patent for "vibrating tattoo" technology. That's right, Nokia's research and development team is working to create a material that can be attached to the skin which will vibrate whenever your phone gets a text or a phone call.

Hypothetically, this technology would be able to alert users when their phone's battery is dying as well, according to the WSJ. Researchers are tossing around ideas of how to apply the material to a person - embedding it under the skin or creating an ink out of the substance.

However, don't expect to wow your friends by being the first to get a vibrating tattoo. Nokia is nowhere near ready to implement this technology. Rather, their patent is more of a preemptive move to protect their research investment should the technology wind up having any consumer application.

"All the mobile phone companies have R&D labs that look very far into the future," Ian Fogg, analyst for the IHS Screen Digest, told Technology News. "Typically, these patents are coming out of the longer-term development programs. Any practical applications may still be years off. This is ahead of where consumers are today."

Jeff Kagan, a telecommunications analyst, told the news source that while people won't be able to go to a Boston tattoo parlor and get hooked up to their phones when they get some sweet ink, the industry is likely moving in that direction.


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