Ripple: Communicating through Physical Vibration


A novel technique for data transmission that uses vibration motors in all cell phones as transmitters and accelerometers as receivers. By carefully regulating the vibrations at the transmitter and sensing them through vibration sensors, two mobile devices can communicate.

This is useful for security-sensitive applications such as mobile payments because vibrations are inherently more secure than RF broadcast in NFC or Bluetooth. The ubiquity of vibration motors in every cell phone, even in developing regions, presents an immediate market for vibratory communication