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  1. zcharat's Avatar
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       #1  
    Hey everyone,

    This weekend I completed a fun little project with my Pre, I successfully extracted and implanted my Orca transit card's RFID chip into my Palm Pre. As my UW student ID bus pass expires next week, I bought the Orca card, but didn't want to carry around ANOTHER card in my wallet. I thought it would be cool to remove the chip from the card, and implant it into my pre, so when I get on any bus/train in the Seattle area, I just wave my phone in front of the card reader to pay my fare. It works fabulously!

    Here's the link to some photos I took during the process:
    facebook.com/album.php?aid=2039064&id=1581960151&ref=mf

    or on Pre Central:
    forums.precentral.net/album.php?albumid=262

    -Zach
    Last edited by jbg7474; 06/29/2010 at 01:12 PM. Reason: Linkified links
  2. #2  
    I love it! Very inspiring
  3. #3  
    Wow that is actually amazing.
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  4. #4  
    Nice, but tell us if you run into any problems when it comes to the Touchstone or antenna problems.


    If I helped you or you have downloaded one of my files,
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  5. #5  
    cool
  6. #6  
    genious!
  7. zcharat's Avatar
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       #7  
    Thanks guys,

    So far, I haven't experienced any problems with the Touchstone, in either its charging or its magnetic alignment.

    In terms of interference: so far 3G, WiFi, and voice transmit just fine. But because this is a passive RFID chip, 99% of the time, it is just a bunch of copper sitting there lifeless. It may be possible that during the split second where the chip is activated, that it may interfere with the functionality of the phone...though I haven't noticed anything yet.

    My main concern is heat. I'm not sure what the chip can take when my phone is running hot. Unfortunately I can't insulate the wires much more, as the extra tape makes the cover unable to close.
  8. #8  
    Dude, that's awesome! I have seriously never thought about doing this.

    I have a question for you; does this only work with the touchstone back cover? After thinking about how the sensor works, I'd have to assume so due to the magnetic field generated by the back cover and it coinciding with the sensor. Is this correct?
  9. #9  
    Thats pretty effin sick... me likes.
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  10. zcharat's Avatar
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       #10  
    Reign,

    I actually think that the touchstone makes no difference in its effectiveness. If anything, the regular back might be better because there is more room to place and secure the antenna, and there is less mass for the card reader to have to penetrate to get to the chip. Unlike credit cards which have a magnetic strip and probably would be affected by the touchstone, RFID uses radio waves to activate the chip. My understanding is that the magnets neither help nor hurt the RFID chip's ability to function in this case.
  11. #11  
    Pretty neat, though hopefully you don't have to ever explain this process to the employee who thinks you're somehow stealing passes or something.
  12. #12  
    http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?pi...=1313013317043

    Here is the link for you. Looks good!
  13. #13  
    That's pretty cool. I wonder how long before a smart phone comes out with a programmable RFID built in. haha
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  14. #14  
    You win the internets.. For a short period of time. Still, awesomeness.
  15. seethescott's Avatar
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    #15  
    Very Cool!
  16. hugh_h's Avatar
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    #16  
    Just be on the lookout for black helicopters...
  17. #17  
    whoa....mega idea!!

    Have to try this with my university paycard. 7 EUR deposit are worth it, I think.



    //edit:
    already googled everything. My chipcard is a legic prime system, so I should be able to do the same as you. Great idea!!
    Last edited by rot; 06/28/2010 at 02:45 AM.
  18. zcharat's Avatar
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       #18  
    rot,

    Go for it! My idea to do this was partially inspired by some other (though dubiously successful) attempts to extract the RFID chip from London's Oyster transit card. A tip for you though, if your transit system has the ability to "register" your card, be sure to do so before you melt the ID number off of your card, I almost messed that one up myself.

    jhoff80,

    I too am a bit concerned with employees thinking I'm scamming the system. Particularly on our light-rail system, which is regulated more-or-less by the "honor system", with cops periodically boarding the train and checking for tickets. Though I've checked the terms of use for Orca, and I'm not technically breaking any rules!
  19. #19  
    Quote Originally Posted by zcharat View Post
    Reign,

    I actually think that the touchstone makes no difference in its effectiveness. If anything, the regular back might be better because there is more room to place and secure the antenna, and there is less mass for the card reader to have to penetrate to get to the chip. Unlike credit cards which have a magnetic strip and probably would be affected by the touchstone, RFID uses radio waves to activate the chip. My understanding is that the magnets neither help nor hurt the RFID chip's ability to function in this case.
    Oh alright. That makes sense. Thanks for the info. It surprises me that the RFID is strong enough to penetrate through the cover.
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  20. zcharat's Avatar
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       #20  
    Its a pretty strong signal, I've seen people tap their entire wallet on the reader successfully, and even seen people tap their backpacks with the card in an outside pocket successfully do it. I think when it comes to modding the card, its really important to keep the antenna in the same general shape as it was when embedded in the card. That said, when I try to tap the pre with the "screen side" down on the reader, it does not activate the chip.
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