Customer Stories: Information at the Touch of a Label


Just by touching a printed smart label, a smartphone can access and analyse information with the human body acting as a transmitter of that information. Behind this innovation are Ericsson, Acreo Swedish ICT and Linköping University.

The technology enabling use of the human body as a communication link opens up new opportunities to communicate with objects just by touching them. Information from the object is then passed on from mobile phones to Internet services for analysis and storage. A number of actions can be triggered and everyday objects can be connected to the Internet using the body and the mobile network.

Each printed label is equipped with an electronic part containing an identity, a printed antenna and a small printed battery that makes it possible to send data. By touching the label the information is sent through the body to a hypersensitive receiver, which is contained in the smartphone. No electric current passes through the body. The mobile phone has a receiver that reads the signal and sends the identity on to a suitable app within the phone, for further processing.

- If this technology is used for future packaging it would be possible to gain information on the quality of the content as well as the handling of the package. It´s really about getting information very easily, says Jan Hederén, R&D Ericsson.

The Connected paper has now been demonstrated successfully at both the Consumer Electronics Show and the Mobile World Conference and has attracted huge interest.

Linköping University has developed the transmitter and receiver circuits and Acreo Swedish ICT is responsible for the integrated printed label. The new technology was developed in a project funded within the VINNOVA program “Challenge-driven Innovation”. The aim of the project is to develop green communication by extending the capabilities of smart phones with the help of smart and dynamic labels, capable of collecting information.

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Video 1: Connected paper

Video 2: PEMM

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Project: Printed Electronics Meet Mobile

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