A vending technology company from Wisconsin will try to revolutionize the way its employees interact with their products and the office space by offering a free microchip implant.
Three Square Market, a company that provides self-service ‘micro market’ vending solutions to businesses in different parts of the world, is offering its employees a free Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID) chip implant.
The RFID chip will enable the employees to open doors, buy snacks, log in to their computers, and use some office equipment like copy machines.Tech company Three Square Market is set to implant its volunteer employees with RFID chip starting August 1st.Click To Tweet
The company reported that right now 50 of its employees have already signed up to try the new technology and be implanted with the tiny chip. Patrick McMullan, COO of Three Square Market, believes that soon, everyone will want their own microchip.
“The international market place is wide open and we believe that the future trajectory of total market share is going to be driven by whoever captures this arena first,” McMullan said.
How RFID Microchip Will Work
The $300 grain-size chip will be inserted using a needle between the thumb and forefinger of a person. According to Three Square Market, the implant procedure will be quick and painless. The RFID chip is said to be made by Biohax International, a Swedish company that specializes in biotechnology.
The chip will operate using Near Field Communication (NFC) technology that is commonly utilized in mobile payments, public transit systems, passports, and animal identification. The electromagnetic field will enable the chip to identify tags in objects, making it possible to operate kiosks, doors, and computers.
In a statement posted on the company blog, CEO Todd Westby said:
“We foresee the use of RFID technology to drive everything from making purchases in our office break room market, opening doors, use of copy machines, logging into our office computers, unlocking phones, sharing business cards, storing medical/health information, and used as payment at other RFID terminals. Eventually, this technology will become standardized allowing you to use this as your passport, public transit, all purchasing opportunities, etc.”
Additionally, McMullan further added that they see the RFID chip as another payment and identification option that can be used not just in markets but for the other self-checkout/ self-service applications of the company.
In a statement to CNBC, Westby clarified that the microchip has no GPS and there is no way for employees to be tracked.
“Unlike your cell phone that is trackable and traceable pretty much no matter where you are, this device is only readable if you’re within six inches of a proximity reader,” he was quoted as saying.
The company also said that chances of hacking the tiny device are ‘nil to none.’
“It is a very secure and safe device.”
Three Square Market will be the first company in the U.S. to use the tiny device that was approved by the FDA in 2004. It will start implanting the RFIDs in early August.
Epicenter, a Swedish start-up hub which is home to more than 100 companies and around 2,000 workers, was reported to have been implanting its workers with the same grain-size chip since January 2015. By April this year, 150 of its employees have already volunteered to be implanted with the RFID chip.