Glasses that can monitor health and play games are developed

Multifunction smart glasses that can monitor your health, let you play video games with your eyes and still work as sunglasses are developed by South Korean scientists

  • The groundbreaking wearables collect more health data than smart watches
  • Soft, conductive electrodes allow the glasses to measure electrical brain signals
  • The device also have sensors that allow them to detect motion and UV light 
  • UV-responsive gel injected into the lenses allow them to change tint in sunlight

Multifunction glasses that can monitor your health, let you play video games with your eyes and still work as sunglasses are developed by South Korean scientists.

The groundbreaking new wearable tech built at Korea University, Seoul, can provide more advanced personal health data than devices like Fitbits or smart watches.

Devices that measure electrical signals from the brain or eyes can help to diagnose conditions like epilepsy and sleep disorders — as well as in controlling computers.

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Multifunction glasses that can monitor your health, let you play video games with your eyes and still work as sunglasses are developed by South Korean scientists

A long-running challenge in measuring these electronic signals, however, has been in developing devices that can maintain the needed steady physical contact between the wearable’s sensors and the user’s skin.

The researchers overcame this issue by integrating soft, conductive electrodes into their glasses that can wirelessly monitor the electrical signals.

The tech can also detect ultraviolet light, interpret body movements or postures and act as a human-machine interface — allowing the wearer to control video games with just the flick of an eye.

The glasses’ frame was built with a 3D printer, before flexible electrodes were added near the ears and eyes.

A wireless circuit to sense motion and UV light was incorporated into the sides of the glasses, and a UV-responsive gel was injected into the lenses — meaning that they respond to light and can change colour to become sunglasses.

The various monitors allowed the wearer to easily move bricks around in a tetris-style video game by adjusting the direction and angle of their eyes.

The groundbreaking new wearable tech built at Korea University, Seoul, can provide more advanced personal health data than devices like Fitbits or smart watches

Devices that measure electrical signals from the brain or eyes can help to diagnose conditions like epilepsy and sleep disorders — as well as in controlling computers to play games, pictured

‘Personal accessories such as glasses and watches that we usually carry in our daily life can yield useful information from the human body,’ said paper author and engineer Suk-Won Hwang of Korea University.

However, he added, ‘most of them are limited to exercise-related parameters or simple heart rates.’

‘Since these restricted characteristics might arise from interfaces between the body and items as one of the main reasons, an interface design considering such a factor can provide us with biologically meaningful data.’

‘The e-glasses could be useful for digital healthcare or virtual reality applications.’

The full findings of the study were published in the journal ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces. 

WHICH COMPANIES ARE WORKING ON AUGMENTED REALITY GLASSES?

Augmented reality (AR) glasses have seen a resurgence in desirability, with a host of firms working to develop their own technology. 

Last year, Bose joined a quickly growing list of tech companies that are building augmented reality eyeglasses. 

The first company to enter the race was Google, which released the Google Glass in 2011. 

Google Glass, now referred to as Glass, has been changed from a consumer-facing product to an enterprise product, used by companies like Boeing. 

Since then, several companies have come out with their own products.

Secretive startup Magic Leap began working on a prototype several years ago, but finally debuted its ‘mixed reality’ smart glasses late last year. 

Magic Leap says its AR glasses will ship in 2018 after a multi-year wait. 

Tech company Vuzix, based in Rochester, New York, is launching its Vuzix Blade glasses later this year for about $1,300. 

Smart glasses that superimpose computer-generated images onto the world around you could start at at £1,000 when they are released this year. Magic Leap, the usually secretive Google-backed company behind the gadget, says it is working on multiple versions of the gadget

They use a tiny projector to show a virtual image in the top right hand corner of their lenses. 

Wearers can connect to WiFi and read emails and other messages via the display, as well as use Alexa, Amazon’s digital assistant, to issue voice commands. 

Amazon is also rumored to be working on its own AR glasses to be released sometime in the future. 

Additionally, Intel released its prototype smart glasses, the Vaunt, earlier this year. 

The glasses use retinal projection to put a tiny display on the wearer’s eyeball. 

Snap has launched its Spectacles and there are rumours of Facebook abd Apple working on AR glasses, 

Niantic, the American firm being Pokemon Go, has also revealed it is partnering with Qualcomm to create its own AR headset technology. 

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