This article is more than 1 year old
Unlock your mobe by STROKING it with your PEARL
1. Ram silicon into hapless mollusc. 2. ???? 3. Profit
Jewellery firm Galatea has released an app which plays audio when one of the company's pearls is touched to the back of a phone. That's not a euphemism.
It is usually believed that pearls are formed when a bit of grit gets into an oyster. This is, however, not the case. Oysters are filter feeders and quite adept at dealing with grit before it gets into their mouths; pearls need an organic seed to start them off.
So while in farmed pearls this nucleus is quite large, and made of shell, Galatea can’t just take an NFC chip, wedge it into a mollusc and wait.
The clue in how the Galatea pearl is made is that Galatea is an expert in cutting pearls; the company has patented a technique which allows it to grow pearls with part of the nucleus exposed. This makes it possible to fit a gem, or an NFC chip, into the pearl. The gap can then be covered by the jewellery mounting.
Naturally it could be used to do anything which is compatible with NFC, such as make payments or even unlock the phone. Galatea has, however, chosen to use it as the crux for one of the cheesiest videos ever.
You can however forget this as a last minute Christmas present – they ship in January. ®