We’re rapidly approaching a point where cybernetic modifications will be commonplace amongst the general public. While highly advanced robotic prosthetic limbs are becoming more available, as well as other medical devices, we can’t truly say we live in a time of cybernetic modification until average consumers can upgrade themselves with non-medical, non-necessary modifications. Enter the smartphone microphone tattooed onto your throat!
Well, that’s only if you take Motorola’s definition of “tattoo” at face value. Unfortunately, Motorola seems to define “tattoo” as anything that adheres to the skin. In reality, this tiny device would be replaced every so often, making it less like a cybernetic implant than a contact lens. But that doesn’t mean this is anything less than a step forward into the future of wearable, and eventually implantable consumer products.
As with all technology, especially that of the consumer kind, the trend is to make the product smaller. Once gigantic “boom boxes” are now clipped to your sleeve. Your once bulky portable phone now swims around your pocket. It isn’t unreasonable to predict a time when all personal electronic devices are reduced down to a fraction of their current size.
The show Continuum comes to mind, where all the functionality of modern smartphones has been reduced to a chip implanted in the head, and viewed through the “wearer’s” own eyes. While Motorola might be playing fast and loose with words just to make a splash, it’s worth considering just how long it will be before people are lining up at their local Apple Store to get the latest iCyber Omni!