Samsung has received a patent in South Korea for interactive contact lenses that can receive or send data to a nearby phone.
According to the patent, the way Samsung’s “smart” contact lenses integrate a camera, movement sensors, a transmitter, and a display unit in the lenses’ glass. They can be controlled by blinking.
To take pictures or interact with data displayed on their contact lenses, the user must blink. The motions are picked up by the sensors, and the commands are relayed to the user’s phone for processing, with the results being sent back immediately.
The user can stream video or send images to their contact lenses from their smartphone, and send pictures they took with the integrated camera back to their mobile device for storage.
Some circuits are visible in the contact lenses, but they’ll be placed towards to glass’ edge, not to impede vision or the received images.
Samsung is not alone in its quest for manufacturing contact lenses. Back at the start of March 2016, Swiss healthcare startup Sensimed was granted approval by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to start testing so-called smart contact lenses that can cure glaucoma.
Additionally, Google has also been working on the same type of technology, for which it receives a patent in March 2015, but never got around to releasing a prototype.
Samsung’s project has nothing to do with health-related applications and seems only to be a project aimed at exploring methods of integrating augmented reality with today’s devices.
The Samsung patent, filed on September 26, 2014, was only approved by South Korean authorities two days ago.