June 3, 2015 -
Google has patented a new technology that transforms a contact lens into an identification device, according to a report by Venture Beat.
The patent application explains how the contact lens covers either the entire or part of the iris of the eye.
The contact lens’ surface is embedded with one or more light sensors, which gathers reflected light off the iris.
The sensors construct an image of the iris, which it then compares with an image of the same iris stored on the system’s memory.
If the images successfully match, a door might automatically unlock for the wearer, or a file containing private data might suddenly be available to access, for example.
The patent does not go into great detail about the technology’s applications. However, the lenses could potentially be used for biometric authentication purposes in a number of different technologies and scenarios.
Google has been rigorously testing the smart contact lenses, setting its sights on providing them to diabetics who need to keep track of their blood sugar levels.
These lenses contain a miniature chip and sensors embedded between the two layers of lens material.
The individual’s tears trickle through a tiny perforation in the lens material to reach the sensors, enabling it to extract blood sugar levels from the liquid. The special lenses can test a diabetic’s blood sugar levels once every second.
The search giant announced last July that it had partnered with pharmaceutical firm Novartis to further develop the smart contact lenses.