The Internet of Things creeps a little more into the mainstream every day. Now, a printed electronic sensor could add your supermarket meat to that meatspace network. An American company called Thinfilm Electronics has developed a stand-alone temperature tracking label that will stick onto perishable products. The sensor takes the guesswork out of dealing with temperature-sensitive products by indicating if the products have ever been exposed to temperatures outside of the safe range.
The sensors, when attached to pharmaceutical packages or perishable food, would prevent unnecessary waste and ease the minds of consumers who might wonder if that chicken was ever left in a hot truck for a few hours on the way to the store. Printing electronics in a low-voltage, battery-powered label format has plenty more uses than just monitoring temperatures. These stand-alone data trackers can give us a whole new insight into the hidden lives of everyday objects.