This key fob concept checks your vital signs and becomes your portal to establishments

The world is slowly trying to get back up on its feet while still trying to keep in mind that the dreaded virus is still around. Despite lifting restrictions, some safety measures are still in place to ensure that the worst-case scenario is never going to happen again. Sometimes, simply being mindful of your own body’s status can already have a significant impact. This is why a designer conceptualized what could be the easiest way to check your body anytime, which also doubles are your key to unlock experiences inside schools, workplaces, and other closed spaces.

Designer: William Fairnington

Even while businesses have started opening up again, some still implement basic checks before they let people in. While not exactly a sure indicator for a viral infection, one’s body temperature can still be a good sign of one’s health or lack of it. Some establishments might even take that as a requirement before you can enter the premises.

That’s why the name of this tiny vital monitoring system is quite apt. “Portal” suggests an entrance, and this keyfob is your figurative and literal key. A Portal owner can simply swing the key fob near a specially-made contactless detector, wait for it to turn green, and walk right in. Unlike some digital ID on your phone or smartwatch, this monitor leaves fewer opportunities for fingerprinting and tracking people, providing them with some level of privacy.

Portal doesn’t just check for body temperature, of course, and it is equipped with some of the same sensors you’d find in a smartwatch or fitness tracker. That includes heart rate and blood oxygen levels, the latter being an important point of interest for those keeping tabs on respiratory problems. These three sensors are packed in a small rectangular block that simply glows green if you’re good to go.

It might be puzzling why you’d want a separate device for something that a smartwatch already provides, but not everyone is actually keen on having a tracker on their wrist. The Portal offers this kind of easy monitoring without the complications, allowing anyone to simply place the fob on their wrist whenever and where ever they need to take a reading.

It still connects to a smartphone, of course, to provide exact readouts and historical data, but it’s easy to imagine the device itself wouldn’t have much that could leak personally identifiable information. The designer hopes that the concept, if it becomes a product, would help democratize vital monitoring, which is going to be critical in our civilization’s journey back to normal.