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Stick close. Samsung announces a skin-mounted, flexible biometric device

Stick close. Samsung announces a skin-mounted, flexible biometric device

Fitbits and similar biometric monitors are great as far as they go, but going can be problem. They only work when they are buckled to a wrist.

Samsung sees a market there. Company researchers have published a paper describing a theoretically commercial way to stick stretchable portable devices to human skin.

The researcher work in the Samsung Advanced Institute of Technology. They claim to have integrated the elastic technology with conventional chip processes. The flat device can be stretched up to 30 percent in any direction.

Specifically, they have created a biometric device consisting of a stretchable OLED display and a photoplethysmography sensor. In tests, it was stuck to an inner wrist over the radial artery where it measured and displayed in real time the wearer’s heart rate.

The device was stretched 1,000 times and through it all, researchers claim, it was able to deliver a pulse signal on a moving wrist 2.4 times stronger than could a conventional fixed silicon sensor.

This result, say researchers, “proves the feasibility of expanding the technology” with other biometric applications.

Samsung faces a growing market (of related ideas if not products) when it comes to portable devices that sit next to or adhere to skin.

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