Since its launch in 1996, Google has brought us Gmail, AdWords, Nexus, and Chrome. And, the company’s latest development is “smart” contacts. Really?
It may seem too futuristic to believe, but Google X, the company’s tech lab, is working to create a special contact lens that monitors blood glucose levels in diabetics. Typically, diabetic patients prick their fingers and test their blood sugar several times each day using special monitors. But, these contacts would be able to determine blood glucose levels from the tears that naturally lubricate our eyes. The contacts would effortlessly take up to one reading per second. When the levels went too high or too low, the contact’s sensors would warn the user with an extremely small LED light that’s embedded in the lens.
Of course, this invention is still in the developmental stages. Google reports that it is still testing the miniature glucose monitor, accompanying apps, and other technological components that go into these contact lenses. They’ve already spoken with the FDA, but Google acknowledges that it may be a long time before the prototype is ready to go into production.
Since medical experts predict that 592 million people will be living with diabetes in 2035, it’s no wonder that Google is interested in this potentially lucrative contact lens. Other organizations are working on similar lenses, too. Microsoft actually introduced the idea back in 2011, but one of the main researchers for that project has since moved (and taken the idea with him) to Google. Researchers at Malmö University in Sweden are also working to develop new technology for glucose-monitoring contacts.
Would you wear “smart” contact lenses?
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