Contact lens camera changes world in a blink of an eye
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Your privacy is about to be changed in the blink of an eye. Tech giant Sony is seeking real estate in your eye with a contact lens that can capture photos and videos.
The device boasts a built-in camera with autofocus, zoom, aperture control and image stabilisation.
The lens will even be able to store the data and play it back via its electroluminescent display screen without connecting to a smartphone.
The lens is operated by consciously blinking, which the patent claims, is a type of blink the device can differentiate from a regular blink.
Angelo Street Optical Optometrist Wayne McCarthy says the electronics intrusion of the pupil zone could be a health risk.
“It really depends on the size of the diameter of the electronics that intrudes the pupil zone and whether enough oxygen can still get through to the cornea,” he said. “Without enough oxygen you risk retina damage.”
The lens will be designed to be worn like a standard contact lens meaning it would be invisible to other people.
So could this kind of device make you vulnerable to unlawful surveillance, harassment or stalking?
ECU Business and Law senior lecturer Michael Crowley says it will test WA’s current privacy and surveillance laws.
“This may well force a discussion about what should and shouldn’t happen. At this stage technology is leaping ahead and the current laws don’t really offer comprehensive protection,” he said.
“The law is still a long way behind.”
Sony isn’t the only company developing wearable photography. It followed suit to Google’s lens technology patent in 2014, designed to help measure diabetics glucose levels from tears, and Samsung’s patent, to house a camera in a contact lens, earlier this month.
There is no guarantee that manufacturing the lens will be successful without user discomfort and low image quality. It may not even go on the market … yet.