" />
Technology

Smart contact lenses: a look at what we can expect

Amanda Dalbjörn
Smart contact lenses: a look at what we can expect

For the visually impaired, contact lenses are more than likely considered annoying necessity for anyone that wants clear vision without the need for glasses.

However, thanks to tech giants like Sony, Google and Samsung, smart contact lenses might be the next big thing.

Exhibited in films like Mission Impossible or the gritty TV series Black Mirror, the ability to transform a contact lens into an intelligent piece of information transmitting equipment is not too far away. Earlier this year, the life science division of Alphabet called Verily, which was previously part of Google, took in an $800 million investment to help this become a reality.

If you are anything like myself, you might be hoping that they provide us with hands free Netflix streaming on the commute to work, or for a quick Facebook search when we bump into someone don’t quite remember the name of. Instead, they are actually being tested for something more basic, and arguably more important.

Smart contact lenses are currently being tested as a method of monitoring diseases, such as diabetes. The aim is to enable diabetics to live a life free of regular finger pricking which is  used to measure blood glucose levels, and instead employing embedded microelectronics to measure glucose in the user’s tears.

One company which is hoping to bring this idea to life is Medella Health. The Canadian startup secured $1.4 million in the summer of last year to fund a 15-person team working to create a glucose monitoring solution for diabetics.

They claim their smart contact lens will cost roughly $25 to create, compared with Google’s public disclosures, which will cost around $200-$300 per lens. This could be a huge life changing breakthrough for the 415 million people living with diabetes worldwide, allowing them to have access to technology which is simple and pain free.

Even though this is a large area of focus for the ambitious developers, there is still good news for those of us who were hoping for the Netflix hands free streaming. According to a recent report titled “Global Smart Contact Lenses Market 2017 Forecast to 2022,” we can also expect to see a whole host of other exciting benefits.

For example, social entertainment features are likely to be integrated into its design, so you can simultaneously observe the world around you while you are also viewing a small screen in a frame mounted projection system for learning, gaming or augmented reality.

The military is also likely to benefit from the introduction of this technology (if it isn’t already), allowing for features such as night vision or facial recognition. As this video demonstrates, Sony hopes to bring us this ability along with many other cutting edge features.

Our vision is one of the most precious senses we have. We depend on it from the moment we wake up to the moment we go to sleep. Naturally, with the introduction of this technology, we are likely to see big changes in behaviour since smart contact lenses could literally change the way we see the world and others.

View Comments (1)

1 Comment

  1. kasiourasg@gmail.com'

    George

    September 18, 2017 at 9:21 AM

    That’s honestly quite brilliant. It’s what I would call as innovation. But, at the same time, it’s kind off terrifying when you imagine all of the possible ways to abuse this kind of technology.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Technology

Sam is an energetic and passionate writer/blogger, always looking for the next adventure. In August 2016 he donated all of his possessions to charity, quit his job, and left the UK. Since then he has been on the road travelling through North, Central and South America searching for new adventures and amazing stories.

More in Technology

trucking freight

The old world of freight is fleeting: 4 new advancements in the trucking industry

Ben AllenOctober 18, 2017
digital ownership

Digital ownership issues at the intersection of art and technology

Zac LavalOctober 18, 2017
AI

Overview: can democracy keep up with AI development?

Ben AllenOctober 17, 2017
humanoid robots

ZoraBots launches humanoid robots powered by IBM’s Watson to help children, elderly

Omar ElorfalyOctober 16, 2017
accelerator latin america

Rockstart accelerator launches its 1st program in Latin America

Jess RappOctober 16, 2017
latin america tech publication

Fiesta! Latin America’s geekiest tech publication turns 5

Tim HinchliffeOctober 13, 2017
startup ecosystem hungary

Startup ecosystem spotlight on Hungary from past, present, and future

Craig CorbettOctober 13, 2017
personal data use

Agreed personal data use and its disagreeable trend

Ben AllenOctober 11, 2017

Google gets a head start on new age of communication technologies

Omar ElorfalyOctober 9, 2017