We know that Google are getting into the hardware business more and more every year, with smartphones and tablets leading the charge. This is a bit different, though, as they have just announced that it’s building a “smart contact lens.” It is meant to help diabetics keep track of their glucose levels. Inside the lens is a miniaturized wireless chip and glucose monitor that will measure the glucose levels of the wearer’s tears.
The idea is that the monitoring process would be made easier than the usual finger prick and testing the blood droplets. The sensor would be able to generate a reading once per second, and Google wants it to act as an early warning device for when glucose levels start dropping. The warning would be given by a small LED light in the contact lens, indicating a drop below a pre-set level.
The project is still a way from reality, but Google are already working with authorities to make it a viable option for diabetics. They are also looking for other partners who are “experts in bringing products like this to market.” The company wants partners to use its technology to develop these lenses and also build apps to make the measurements available to users. There’s no word on when this lens might be a reality, or even if it’ll work as planned, but it’s good to see Google using its engineering prowess to try and solve a long-standing medical problem.
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