London commuters can rejoice if British student Lucie Davis’s idea ever goes to market. The college student, who was recently featured in Cosmopolitan, knows all too well how easy it is to lose the Oyster card, the travel card that gets riders in and out of the Tube. To overcome the hassle of rummaging through a bag or pockets, Davis invented a set of microchip press-on nails that act just like the Oyster card.
The jewelry design student at Central Saint Martins in London told the Evening Standard that she got permission from the Transport of London to take apart the Oyster card and use the chip in her set of nails. The press-on nails are embedded with the radio frequency identification chip that’s in the Oyster card, enabling users to get in and out of the publication transportation system in London without whipping out a card. All they have to do is put their finger to the button.
According to the report, Davis doesn’t think her press-on nails' usefulness will stop at the London tube, as she sees them as the perfect substitute to a bank card. Instead of carrying a wallet, women can pay for groceries or withdraw money with their press-on nails. Davis, who is working on other projects, was the winner of the Mullenlowe Nova award for creative thinking and execution, chosen from 1,300 applicants.
Davis's product comes at a time when the idea of embedding payment methods onto a person is growing in popularity. Barclays Card, for example, has its bPay loop, which is a RFID chip that people can attach to their watches or fitness bands and use to make small payments. Super techy people have went as far as to embed a microchip under their skin so they don’t have to touch their phone, start their car, or open a door.