Pickpockets beware: New Ericson mobile technology to detect, expose thieves  


Swedish telecommunications equipment manufacturer, Ericson has set up an advanced mechanism to deal with pickpockets.

The development will see mobile phones protecting themselves against pickpockets by vibrating and not allow anyone but the owner to have a grip on the device.

Moreso, the new technology will be able to tell if someone other than the owner is attempting to pick it up using just the heartbeat.

If an unauthorised user is detected, the phone will enter ‘lo-friction mode’, making the phone more ‘slippery’ and difficult to pick up.

The Swedish company explained in their patent application that any unauthorised user will not have it easy.

Ericsson hopes the phone will be able to detect where the phone is – for example, in a hand, or in a pocket – and adjust how much friction is applied.

It may also be able to sense if someone is picking the phone up or putting it down, before making it easier to do so.

The patent explains that the company decided to explore this technology in response to phones becoming thinner and smaller, making them difficult to grip.

A number of sensors may be used in the device including biometric, fingerprint and optical for identification, and accelerator and light so the phone can work out where it is being kept or held.

It is not known when the technology could be available, but the patent was filed in February this year.

Many people will be hoping it will be sooner rather than later, with 446,000 mobiles stolen in the UK alone in 2016.

In the U.S., that figure is even higher, with 3.1 million people falling victim in 2013.



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