There is a vision technology revolution taking place today as lab based proof-of-concept devices transition to commercialized products. A parallel example of what is happening today is to look back 20 years when the sole utility of a cellphone was performing as a mobile telephone. Although the cellphone revolutionized the way we do business, technological advances over the past two decades including touch screens, faster processors, camera/videos, sound quality, wireless power and control, extended battery life and increased data storage have combined to create the smart phone brand category, which today is estimated to be a $715 billion market.
You can see many parallels with the advancement from cell phones to smart phones to the rapid advances in vision-based products. Examples include, eyewear with on-board sound and microphones, on-board cameras, HUD displays and liquid crystal lenses that can change focus on demand. These patented and licensable technologies for vision products promise to make a tremendous impact in the marketplace. Let’s take an exclusive look behind the scenes and explore different vision based technologies offered by a vision tech company. For over a decade eVision Optics has served the vision industry with technological developments and today maintains more than 500 patents and patent applications worldwide on these advancements.
Electronic Prescription Eyewear
As we age, we lose our near vision, which happens when the lens of the eye looses its elasticity, known as presbyopia. According to the National Institute of Health (NIH), there are approximately 1.8 billion people globally who suffer from this eye condition. Presbyopia normally becomes an issue in our early 40s. A product now available in Japan called TouchFocus® allows people who require prescription lenses to turn on electronic reading areas of their lenses. Segments turn on for near reading at the touch of the eyewear and off when they don’t need it. This technology is available for patent licensing for prescription electronic lenses as a viable option to traditional bifocals and no-line progressive lenses. Most people using progressive lenses and bifocals will tell you, with a choice, they would prefer not to have different focal length segments in their lenses. Looking up and down to view the world through different embedded focal length segments in the same lens in order to “switch” from reading to distance prescriptions can cause a nauseating condition called “swim” that even the most modern designed lenses can never fully resolve.
Over-the-Counter (non-prescription “OTC Readers”) electronic reading glasses for near focus vision
A quick look around the web and you will find many new high priced fashion OTC Reader brands driven by consumer demand. OTC Reader eyewear is an over-the-counter solution to help overcome near vision loss caused by presbyopia. Several top of the line fashion brands offer online virtual computer based try-ons, so fashion conscious consumers can see how they look. A new tech solution will soon be readers with embedded electronic lenses that can provide multiple viewing distances controlled at users’ discretion. Electronic lens technology will provide the ability to switch from a near-distance zone for reading, to intermediate zone focus for computer use and then distance viewing controlled electronically. Soon fashion frames will provide enhanced electronic performance with seamless focal distance selections to match the user’s needs. Electronic lenses combined with fashion design frames will provide an electronic solution to meet a rapidly growing consumer base.
The Electronic Contact Lens (ECL)
The eVision Electronic Contact Lens or ECL takes electronic focusing technology down to a form factor that fits inside a contact lens. The ECL can utilize a printed iris to match the user’s eyes or can provide the user the ability to change the color of their eyes. Beneath the printed iris surface of the lenses are the electronic wireless controls, electronic shifting focus lens and rechargeable batteries. The electronic controls behind the iris shift the focus based on the wearers choice, defaulting to clear or the base prescription should there be a loss of power or electronic control. Selection of the focus zone will be made using an app, smart watch or another wireless ECL dedicated control device. This will provide the real time ability to shift focus with the same freedom of not wearing eyewear that normal contacts provide.
Virtual Reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR) and a new electronically controlled lens to help with the Vergence Accommodation Conflict
To realize the full potential of Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) devices, electronic lenses will bridge the gap between the virtual and real world. One of the key issues with current reality devices is the Vergence Accommodation Conflict. This conflict is caused when the brain processes sharp images in a field that normally would require the brain to refocus the eye, resulting in headaches, nausea and fatigue. Electronic lenses that shift the focus on demand are a new tool to help fight this known issue in Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality and Mixed Reality. Electronic lenses can unlock the potential of reality based products as the world of Virtual Reality products become more mainstream at work and at play.
All of these innovations can be enhanced with mobile media applications, audio and microphone capabilities, the ability to communicate with remote devices and wireless power and control applications utilizing eVision’s electronic wearable frame technologies. Interfaces with vision, sound, display and cameras are a key part of our lives and critical to advancing technological devices.
eVision Optics creates the innovation and licenses patented technologies to companies that commercialize new or enhanced products. The eVision suite of vision and eyewear enhancement patents can help licensing partners tap into new and exciting global markets.