So long Google Glass, hello Google Eye.
Google and Swiss pharmaceutical company Novartis announced this morning that they will be collaborating on bringing Google’s smart contact lens technology, which contains sensors for tracking things like blood glucose levels for diabetics, to consumers.
Google announced the smart lens project back in January, but at the time it was clear the company would need some sort of partner to make it a reality. The project came out of Google X, the skunkworks shop that also developed Google Glass and the company’s self-driving car initiative.
“Our dream is to use the latest technology in the miniaturization of electronics to help improve the quality of life for millions of people,” Google co-founder Sergey Brin said in a statement.
As part of the deal, Novartis’s eyecare arm Alcon will license Google’s smart lens technology to commercialize it. Specifically, Novartis says it’s interested in the tech’s glucose-sensing capabilities for diabetics, as well as its potential for helping people with presbyopia, who can’t read without glasses. The smart lens technology could eventually help to fix the eye’s autofocus capabilities for nearby objects, potentially by implanting it directly into the eye.
To be clear, the smart contact lens tech doesn’t do anything that Google Glass does. But now that Google has found a partner to make it a reality, it’ll be interesting to see what else Google will be able to bring right to your eyeballs soon.
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