Nanotech could end up providing a solution to the need for bulky headsets in virtual reality environments, and the answer involves contact lenses.
Bellevue, WA-based Innovega with its iOptik platform embedded a center filter and display lens at the center of a contact lens. The optical elements are smaller than the eye’s pupil and therefore do not interfere with vision. A projector can hit those tiny optical elements, which guide images to the retina. But the retina is still getting the overall normal vision provided through the entire pupil, so the brain ends up viewing the projected images and the overall normal field of vision as one.
The company said its iOptik platform provides wearers a “virtual canvas” on which any media can be viewed or application run. The prototypes will feature up to six times the number of pixels and 46 times the screen size of mobile products that rely on designs limited by conventional optics. Those optics are said to deliver games, simulator environments, and movies that are truly “immersive” and “mimic IMAX performance,” the company said.
The electronics are built into a stylish pair of glasses without the bulk or weight of traditional approaches to video and VR eyewear. The setup can also display a multi-tasking dashboard that incorporates five or more typical screens, all while simultaneously providing the wearer a safe and clear view of their environment.
The iOptik will be regulated in the United States as a Class II medical device, as normal contact lenses are.
Google is rumored to be developing a medical device. Could it be a next-generation of Google Glass that uses nanotech in contact lenses?