University graduates have developed a wearable device based on heartbeat-based biometrics.
The $80 Nymi contained an electrocardiogram sensor that monitored personal heartbeat characteristics. Once it has authenticated the user based on heartbeat, it communicated their identity to selected devices using Bluetooth Low Energy.
The unit only authenticated using the heartbeat's unique characterstics once. After that, it checked for the heartbeat's presence.
If it was removed, it stopped authenticating the user to the device, and they must put it on to reauthenticate themselves.
The device must be registered with an app, which is available for iOS, Android, Windows and OS X. It uses a mixture of proximity sensing and gesture monitoring, allowing users to control devices by flicking their wrists, say the creators.
The unit, which is now on pre-order, ships in early 2014. The founders are hoping to use the system to enable more features in the future, including authenticated mobile payments.
The product gained $1.4 million in seed funding in August and was developed by engineering graduates from the University of Toronto.