Google's Smart Contact Lens Isn't A 'Terminator' Computer, But A Life-Saving Future Tech

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Google has announced plans for a 'smart contact lens' to monitor glucose levels in your blood stream.

At first glance the image released by the search giant looks like a pitch for a massive evolution of its Google Glass wearable computer.

But if you're dreaming of 'Terminator' style floating crosshairs, in-eye navigation and email while you sleep, we've got some slightly disappointing news.

The new invention is actually aimed at tackling diabetes - a growing problem that affects one in every 19 people on Earth.

Google said that by using miniaturised electronics embedded in a contact lens, it is possible to easily and continuously monitor the level of glucose in the bloodstream and relay that information to a smartphone or computer.

This could give sufferers a vital warning if their blood sugar spikes or drops, and prevent more serious side-effects before they occur.

Google said there was "still a lot more work to do to turn this technology into a system that people can use", but added that it sought the project out specifically because it might "seem a bit speculative or strange".

"We’re now testing a smart contact lens that’s built to measure glucose levels in tears using a tiny wireless chip and miniaturized glucose sensor that are embedded between two layers of soft contact lens material.

We’re testing prototypes that can generate a reading once per second. We’re also investigating the potential for this to serve as an early warning for the wearer, so we’re exploring integrating tiny LED lights that could light up to indicate that glucose levels have crossed above or below certain thresholds.

It’s still early days for this technology, but we’ve completed multiple clinical research studies which are helping to refine our prototype. We hope this could someday lead to a new way for people with diabetes to manage their disease."

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