Humans Could Form Backbone Of New Mobile Internet Networks


Mobile broadband networks could be boosted by attaching wearable sensors to humans, according to researchers in Ireland.
Academics at Queen’s University Belfast believe that mobile phones could one day be replaced by special sensors carried on the human body, which would create “body-to-body networks” (BBNs) and form ultra-high bandwidth mobile internet infrastructures.
This could help cut network lag caused by cluttered mobile base stations and provide “anytime anywhere network coverage”, engineers from the university’s Institute of Electronics, Communications and Information Technology (ECIT) said.
Dr Simon Cotton, a researcher at ECIT said that he envisions the sensors either being worn on the body, carried on smartphones or even integrated into clothing.
He claims that BBNs would “provide a number of key benefits compared to cellular networks alone such as in disaster situations where cellular infrastructure has become damaged or is unavailable”.
In addition to mobile broadband benefits, he believes the body-to-body networks could also bring great social benefits, including significant improvements in remote healthcare, mobile gaming and athletics training.

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