Google Contact Lens
|Product family||Google X|
Google Contact Lens is a smart contact lens project announced by Google on 16 January 2014. The project aims to assist people with diabetes by constantly measuring the glucose levels in their tears. The project is being carried out by Google X and it is currently being tested using prototypes.
The lens consists of a wireless chip and a miniaturized glucose sensor. Both of the sensors are embedded between two soft layers of lens material. Plans to add small LED lights that could warn the wearer by lighting up when the glucose levels have crossed above or below certain thresholds have been mentioned to be under consideration.
The prototypes being tested can generate a reading once per second.
On 16 January 2014 Google announced that, for the past 18 months, they had been working on a contact lens that could help people with diabetes by making it continually check their glucose levels. Google noted in their official announcement that scientists have long looked into how certain body fluids can help track glucose levels easier, but as tears are hard to collect and study, using them was never really an option. They also mentioned that the project is currently being discussed with the FDA while still noting that there is a lot more work left to do before the product can be released for general usage, which is said to happen in five years at best, and that they are looking for partners who would use the technology for the lens by developing apps that would make the measurements available to the wearers and their respective doctors.
Palo Alto Medical Foundation endocrinologist Dr. Larry Levin commented on how remarkable and important it is that Google is getting into the medical field. He additionally commented on how he is very excited to be able to offer his patients a pain-free alternative from either pricking their fingers or living with a thick needle embedded in their stomach, both being the current methods used for monitoring.
- Brian Otis; Babak Parviz (16 January 2014). "Introducing our smart contact lens project". Google Official Blog. Retrieved 17 January 2014.
- "Google contact lens could be option for diabetics". The Washington Post. 17 January 2014. Retrieved 17 January 2014.
- "Google announces 'smart' contact lenses that monitor glucose levels". Fox News. 16 January 2014. Retrieved 17 January 2014.