Where are the U2F Rings?


The FIDO specification defines a form of Universal 2nd Factor (U2F) when users log in to a system. Rather than relying on one-time codes sent via SMS, or displayed on a phone screen, these are physical hardware tokens which are used to supplement passwords. When used with websites, this technology is also known as WebAuthn.

I use a USB thumb-drive sized hardware token and they're nifty - but a little impractical.

YubiKey Neo - a thumb sized USB device - on cardboard backing

Since the great working from home experiment, I don't have my keys on me at all times. This means my Yubico Neo sits on a keychain, in a pocket of a coat which is rarely worn. So every time I need to use U2F to authenticate with a service, I have to trek around the house trying to remember where I last saw my keyring.

Wouldn't it be great if I could wear my Yubikey? Some high-tech jewellery would be fab!

To be clear, this isn't an original idea:

And some people do wear their keys as pendants

https://twitter.com/_unlobito/status/1491875087708049408

There are also Yubikey earrings:

So why not a ring? A ring doesn't take up much space on the body, they're rarely taken off, and they're socially acceptable jewellery for most people.

A basic NFC ring costs less than two pounds! But it doesn't have the necessary processing power for U2F.

The OMNI ring is £70 and looks like it has the right hardware. But, sadly, they appear to be incompatible with the FIDO specification.

The cheapest FIDO2 U2F NFC key is about £30. So it shouldn't be impossible to put the hardware into a more aesthetically pleasing form factor.

Token were planning to release a WebAuthn ring "soon" - but with no price nor predicted availability. Their social media hasn't been updated in two years. Similarly, Motiv were planing on releasing a WebAuthn ring - but they got bought by a company called Proxy - who have since fallen into a Web3 hole never to be heard of again.

So - this is my version of Cunningham's Law. If I blog saying something doesn't exist - some smartarse will immediately post a link to some Shenzhen store selling them for a quid each!

There are no WebAuthn rings - or other jewellery-like form factors. And that sucks.


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6 thoughts on “Where are the U2F Rings?”

  1. I would buy one of these, if the price was reasonable, the ring looked good, and I could set up a convenient reader on both my computers and my phone.

    Reply
  2. Joe Prencipe says:

    Hey Terence, we just released a FIDO2 Smart ring. Check it out over at getcybernetic.com. It's brought to you from the guys behind Dangerous Things (that implant company).

    Reply

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