Motiv smart ring can use your walking pattern to unlock online accounts

You'll soon be able to pay for goods with the Motiv smart ring

Julian Chokkattu/Digital Trends

Motiv’s fitness tracking smart ring is one of the most subtle ways to track your fitness level, but Motiv is continually adding more. After adding additional security features in 2018, Motiv took to the CES 2019 stage to announce it will be adding NFC mobile payments and ECG readings that act as security authentication.

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Motiv has done an excellent updating its smart ring with new functions, and these most recent ones could be its most revolutionary yet. Support for NFC payments would mean you’d be able to pay with your Motiv ring, eschewing the need for a phone or payment card. The support for electrocardiogram readings (ECG) — similar to the Apple Watch Series 4 — would also act as additional security, using the unique pattern of your heartbeat like a fingerprint.

This wouldn’t be the first security features on the ring though. Motiv’s existing security features come in two varieties: Token authentication and biometric identification. Token authentication uses your Motiv smart ring as the second layer of defense for your most important accounts. Rather than sending a two-factor authorization code or request to your smartphone or email address, you’ll be able to certify your login attempt with a simple gesture of your Motiv ring. It will also support password-free logins on Google Chrome and Windows Edge with FIDO2 and WebAuthn.

It has other biometric identification as well, with fingerprint scanning and facial recognition available through the Motiv smartphone app. But the ECG won’t be the ring’s first biometric security either. The ring’s WalkID feature uses your unique method of walking as identification, as gait is as individual and unique as a fingerprint. The smart ring’s continuous tracking allows it to keep track of this.

We’ve been following Motiv’s smart ring for some time now. If you’re not familiar with the finger-based smart device, the titanium-coated ring pairs with your Android or iOS smartphone, and it counts your active minutes — ensuring you hit 150 minutes a week. It even includes a heart rate sensor, giving people a much more subtle option for casual fitness tracking. Motiv is also looking to branch the subtle device into other elements of everyday life — and online security is at the top of the list.

There hasn’t been an increase in price, and you’ll be able to pick up the Motiv smart ring from $199 from Amazon or Motiv. If you’re unsure about the size, Motiv is also releasing a digital sizing tool that uses A.I. to pinpoint the ring size you need.

Following its launch in the U.S., buyers in Canada, the United Kingdom, Japan, Australia, and 20 other countries will now be able to purchase the smart Motiv Ring, freeing up their wrist by using their finger to track their fitness, monitor their heart rate, and unlock digital security. The Motiv Ring will also be launching in Smartech stores across eight European countries.

Updated on January 10, 2019: Motiv has announced a wealth of new features for 2019.

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