Samsung has made known its latest foray into the wearables market, successfully pioneering contact lenses that feature an in-built camera and display which can transmit images directly into the userâs eye. The contact lens design, which also boasts highly sensitive sensors, is hoped to not only significantly enhance the experience and accuracy of artificialised vision, but also pave the way for a future of smart vision.
The smart lens technology is expected to be much more intuitive than those released prior as it will be wholly controlled by usersâ eye movements. What effectively translates as a move from having an external camera to an internal camera by Samsung will potentially allow photographs to be taken with a simple blink or wink. The image data would then be transmitted by an antenna to the userâs companion smart device.
When users will be able to get their hands on the software as yet remains unclear. It was on an unofficial blog dedicated to the mobile device and technology leader, Sammobile, that news of the project first emerged. Sammobile pointed out that an application for patent has been put forth by Samsung, and the inspiration behind the contact lenses is thought to be the failings of previous corrective vision technologies such as Googleâs attempt in 2014.
Because, of course, this is not the first invention to explore the potential of contact lens technologies. Google signed a major deal with healthcare specialist Novartis in 2014 which saw the two firms develop contacts lens that could help to monitor a userâs blood glucose levels. Emerging from the very same division responsible for Googleâs smartglasses, Google X, the contact lenses were able to analyse the material properties of usersâ tears using chips and sensors. They could thus indicate to diabetes suffers if their blood glucose level was either worryingly high or low.
The race to develop the latest and best in wearable technologies is set to continue this year with the UK release of Microsoftâs HoloLens fast approaching on the horizon. Nevertheless, it could be Samsungâs more functional contact lenses that create the biggest waves in the sector â particularly if theyâre able to deliver on the promises made by the firm in 29-page patenting document.