Mobile Devices

Remote tattoo via robot arm powered by 5G technology

10 September 2020
A tattoo was conducted remotely using 5G networks with the artist in another local elsewhere. Source: T-Mobile

T-Mobile’s Netherlands creative agency, Anomaly Amsterdam, has conducted what it claims is the world’s first-ever remote tattoo using a 5G network.

The tattoo was performed by a robot arm that was controlled by a tattoo artist in another location and executed in real-time via 5G. T-Mobile said there was virtually no delay in the action with millimeter accuracy, meaning that future tattoos could be executed from virtually any distance.

Anomaly had The Mill, a production company, build a custom robot tattoo arm and used a Dutch tattoo artist to operate the remote tattoo technology and help with the research and development of the technology by conducting tests on vegetables and prosthetic skin samples before doing the final tattoo on a living person.

“There were three lanes of initial development. Firstly, we needed to work out how to track the tattoo artist's movements and detect when he was making contact with the surface of a fake practice arm and transmit this data over the 5G network,” said Noel Drew, who built the robot arm for The Mill. “Secondly, we had to develop a robotic platform that could receive this data in real-time and control the robot's movements in relation to the human arm. Thirdly, we needed to develop a deep understanding of the fine details of tattooing.”

T-Mobile said that 5G offers new possibilities in the field of connectivity and mobile internet. The low latency that 5G affords allows for remote uses such as augmented reality in industrial use cases and other applications.

The goal of the remote tattoo demonstration was to show what 5G is capable of and what might be possible in the future with the next-generation technology.

To contact the author of this article, email

Powered by CR4, the Engineering Community

Discussion – 0 comments

By posting a comment you confirm that you have read and accept our Posting Rules and Terms of Use.
Engineering Newsletter Signup
Get the Engineering360
Stay up to date on:
Features the top stories, latest news, charts, insights and more on the end-to-end electronics value chain.
Weekly Newsletter
Get news, research, and analysis
on the Electronics industry in your
inbox every week - for FREE
Sign up for our FREE eNewsletter
Find Free Electronics Datasheets