Losing your bank card can be a major inconvenience. You can be left exposed to fraud, not to mention temporarily unable to access funds. But what if your card was implanted inside your body?
Such a concept may not be as far-fetched as it seems. Scientists have already experimented with using computerised implants to control their surrounding environment.
Such implants use electronic signals to automatically open doors and turn on lights. When hooked up to the internet, implants can even control robotic equipment on the other side of the world.
In the future, it may be possible to use this technology to make financial transactions, taking ‘contactless payments’ to a whole new dimension.
No more lost cards
Professor Kevin Warwick, the world’s leading cybernetics expert, was the first in his field to insert an implant into his body for research purposes. He believes the future of the technology will benefit businesses.
Speaking at Tata Consultancy Services’ Summit Europe 2017, Professor Warwick drew parallels between his research and how cybernetics could potentially shake up the banking sector.
“The implant that I had was an identification implant that identified me to my building,” he said.
“But now we can see perhaps with credit cards, why not do away with the plastic and have the implant that identifies you instead of your credit card?
“Then you wouldn’t lose it, you wouldn’t leave it behind, it’s with you all the time and you don’t need your cards anymore.”
Although still a long way off, it is hoped that people and businesses could eventually use implant technology to communicate purely with the power of thought.
Human interaction works by converting complex electro-chemical signals in the brain into mechanical signals, such as movement or speech. But in the future this conversion may not be necessary.
The rise of Business 4.0, and the digital innovation that comes with it, is speeding up the development of technology that could underpin a fundamental change to the way we converse with each other.
“Business 4.0 is into digital, it’s into data, it’s into networking and clearly what I’m about in cybernetics is all of those things, particularly the networking,” Professor Warwick told the summit.
“I see new forms of communication coming about and Business 4.0 is part of that.”
He added: “Looking to the future, I see it as brain to brain communication – not communicating with technology through your voice or by pressing buttons, but by thinking.”