Search giant Google has clubbed hands with major drug maker Novartis to develop smart lenses and commercialize them for monitoring health condition, besides improving vision.
Industry insiders say Google’s smart contact lenses will be available in the markets sooner than expected. They say the deal struck with Swiss pharmaceuticals giant Novartis and Google has expedited the process.
The smart lens technology was first shown in January this year.
The smart lenses have put under the Google X where a host of future technology devices are being developed. Other devices like Google Glass and self-driving cars are put under Google X.
With its expanding range of wearables, Google aims at providing a seamless solution to monitor health condition and fitness.
The joint venture of Novartis’ eye care division Alcon and Google will help the search giant in getting the right medical guidance it needs to make the smart lenses technically more efficient.
According to Google, following the reformation the smart lenses will be able to monitor serious health issues like diabetes by measuring the level of glucose in tears.
It will, moreover, give more space to the patients to keep a tab on their health fluctuations and use its data for better analysis and control of diabetes. The device will open a possibility for new treatments.
Novartis CEO Joseph Jimenez, said in a press release, “We are looking forward to working with Google to bring together their advanced technology and our extensive knowledge of biology to meet unmet medical needs.”
He further adds, “This is a key step for us to go beyond the confines of traditional disease management, starting with the eye.”
According to the pharmaceuticals company Novartis, the smart eye device has the potential “to help restore the eye’s natural autofocus on near objects”.
According to Jeff George, division head of Alcon, the combination of organisation’s knowledge of eyecare, contact lenses and intraocular lenses with Google’s smart lens technology will help in addressing the serious medical needs of millions of eyecare patients worldwide.
Echoing similar views, Google co-founder Sergey Brin said, “We aim at improving the quality of life in people with this latest technology. We are very excited to work with Novartis to make this dream come true.”