The future is here with flexible technology

PHOENIX - It's no secret that technology is getting smaller and thinner. But it's also getting more flexible.

This past weekend a group focused on flexible technology held its convention right here in Phoenix.

Some of the products could even help save your life. And as they say, thin is in.

Taking circuits, displays and sensors and cutting them down to size – making them flexible. That's what flex tech is all about.

"We're actually taking that same technology and transforming it and putting it onto curved surfaces and flexible surfaces," said Malcolm Thompson with FlexTech Alliance.

You've seen the electronic ink displays on a Kindle and the company that makes those screens is also going flexible.

Jenn Vail of E-Ink says, "You can see it's flexible – it's not really rollable, but most people don't really want that, they just want to have it lightweight and rugged.

Even smaller than that, a new watch from E-Ink that is the world's thinnest at .8 mm. It's as thin as a bracelet with a watch built in.

When we look at the future, you can even have a digital tattoo on your arm. It's thinner than a piece of paper and has sensors and circuits built in.

"We can measure temperature, we might measure UV in the environment for sensing sunlight," says Kevin Dowling with MC10.

A sticker that sends a message to your smartphone when you've had too much sun sure could be helpful in the Valley of the Sun.

Digital bandaids that record vitals are also in the works.

Or a beanie cap your child wears during a football or soccer game can measure blows to the head.

"I think it gives them a great safety option to have their sons and daughters, constantly have an extra set of eyes," Dowling said.

And possibly giving mom and dad a warning before things get worse.

The beanie is expected to be available in the next few months at a cost of under $200.

Flexible technology that is here, right now.

Print this article Back to Top