Select your localized edition:

Close ×

More Ways to Connect

Discover one of our 28 local entrepreneurial communities »

Be the first to know as we launch in new countries and markets around the globe.

Interested in bringing MIT Technology Review to your local market?

MIT Technology ReviewMIT Technology Review - logo

 

Unsupported browser: Your browser does not meet modern web standards. See how it scores »

A Hewlett-Packard research facility unveiled a tiny wireless device, dubbed a Memory Spot, which the company says will become the equivalent of a digital Post-it, allowing people to easily transfer electronic information between almost anything.

The chip has an adhesive back, allowing it to be stuck anywhere, enabling people to add information to everything from a photo to a passport to medical-alert bracelets, according to this article in the San Jose Mercury News. When the devices eventually become commercially available, possibly in two years, they may cost as little a $.10 per unit, according to this New York Times article.

Much has been made of the coming mobile information age, although most stories have focused on the RFID tags, which, while having a variety of limitations, seemed the best alternative for many uses. HP’s Memory Spot, though, will offer distinct advantages over RFID. From the Mercury News article:

The memory spots are similar in some ways to the more simplistic radio-frequency identification tags. But they are far smarter and more secure: They can store more than 250 times as much data as RFID, transmit data more than 20 times faster and encrypt it, sidestepping many of the privacy concerns over RFID tags.

Two questions come to mind with this type of technology: Will such a small device be practical for every day use by a general, consumer audience? And what happens to the data on the device if it somehow comes “unstuck” from the surface it’s been attached to?

Still, it’s nice to see some movement on the mobile information front. There’s been hype around this (and I’ve been included in some of that), but precious little on the practical front.

1 comment. Share your thoughts »

Reprints and Permissions | Send feedback to the editor

From the Archives

Close

Introducing MIT Technology Review Insider.

Already a Magazine subscriber?

You're automatically an Insider. It's easy to activate or upgrade your account.

Activate Your Account

Become an Insider

It's the new way to subscribe. Get even more of the tech news, research, and discoveries you crave.

Sign Up

Learn More

Find out why MIT Technology Review Insider is for you and explore your options.

Show Me
×

A Place of Inspiration

Understand the technologies that are changing business and driving the new global economy.

September 23-25, 2014
Register »