Implanted microchips becoming popular in Sweden

Self-described “body hacker” Jowan Osterlund from Biohax Sweden, holds a small microchip implant, similar to those implanted into workers at the Epicenter digital innovation business centre during a party at the co-working space in central Stockholm, Tuesday March 14, 2017. Microchips are being implanted into volunteers to help them open doors and operate office equipment, and its become so popular that members of the Epicentre cyborg club hold regular parties for those with the tiny chips embedded in their hands. (AP Photo/James Brooks)

(WVLT/ NPR) — According to a report from NPR, an increasing number of Swedes are having microchips implanted into their hands.

Users of the chip say it simplifies their lives.

So many people are interested in the technology that Sweden's main chipping company said it can't keep up with demand.

In a statement to NPR, the founder of one of the nation's top chipping companies, Jowan Osterlund said, "Having different cards and tokens verifying your identity to a bunch of different systems just doesn't make sense. Using a chip means that the hyper-connected surroundings that you live in every day can be streamlined."

Only 1 in 4 people living in Sweden use cash at least once a week, according to the report.

Experts say someday the chips could be used to make payments or serve as a train ticket.

However, Osterland said the current lack of support for the chip in other countries could prevent it from becoming a globally supported device any time soon.

"I have a hard time seeing the rest of the world following GDPR anytime soon. But at least all of Europe — I mean one continent — it's a good beginning."

Read the full report here.