HP today has unveiled a rice grain-sized chip, equipped with wireless capabilities, that could store medical info:
Hewlett-Packard on Monday unveiled the prototype of an ant-sized wireless chip that can be built into a patient’s wristband to store medical data or attached to a postcard to send vacation photos to friends back home.
The chip, developed by HP Labs’ “memory spot” research team, reflects the growing trend of consumers to store their photos, songs, and videos in mobile devices, from laptops to cell phones to MP3 players. It also has additional features that current RFID tags, which can be used to track merchandise or your favorite pets, don’t have.
The tiny chip is 2- to 4-millimeters square and comes with a built-in antenna that can transfer data at 10 megabits per second, HP said. That’s 10 times faster than Bluetooth. The chip stores up to 4 megabits of data–enough to store several images or dozens of plain pages of text.
HP, which plans to demonstrate the chip at its labs Monday, sees a variety of potential uses, though its commercialization could be years away.