There are various applications that can allow you to link your smartphone to anything from your doorbell, to your clothes, to your jewelry – and the time is not far when your contact lenses will also be added to this list.
Engineers at the University of Washington have come up with an innovative way of communication that would let medical aids such as neural implants and contact lenses to send signals to smartphones. A new technology named ‘Interscatter communication’ has been developed. It converts Bluetooth signals into Wi-Fi signals.
This technology is based on an existing method of communication called backscatter, which allows devices exchange information by reflecting back existing signals. Interscatter communication basically works the same way. The only difference is that it allows inter-technology communication. In other words, you can just say that it lets the Bluetooth signals and Wi-Fi signals talk to each other.
With the help of this new technology, sending data from contact lenses to other devices would become possible. It requires a lot of power for a device like contact lens to send data through Wi-Fi. The engineers demonstrated it by designing a contact lens equipped with a tiny antenna. In this case, the Bluetooth signals were coming from a smartwatch and the antenna on the contact lens was receiving them, further encoding the data and converting it into a Wi-Fi signal that could be read by another device.
This concept of smart contact lenses can provide valuable medical information to patients. It can allow the user to monitor the blood sugar level from his tears. According to the researchers, Interscatter communication can also be used to transmit data from brain implants, which can one day help people with paralysis in regaining movement.