Dallas Semiconductor has released the Crypto iButton, a hardware token that runs on the Java Card 2.0 specification and can be attached to rings, watches, wallets, and other articles to provide authentication and data storage capabilities. The company distributed several thousand copies on "Java rings" at JavaOne in San Francisco last week.
The iButton allows users to store private keys for encrypting messages, sign digital documents, store personal preferences, and other capabilities on the token. The iButton communicates through a Blue Dot Receptor that creates a pipeline to existing computers, and it is available at a price of $US15. The company also offers an iButton Toolkit for Java for developers, priced at $50.
The Crypto iButton, which implements a Java virtual machine, is a monolithic chip with a high-speed, 8-bit microprocessor, 32Kb of ROM, 6Kb of nonvolatile static RAM, a True Time clock, and a high-speed math accelerator for 1024-bit public key cryptography. The iButton Java ring is available now at a price of $59.50.
Dallas Semiconductor, in Dallas, is at http://www.dalsemi.com.