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Google Applies For Patent On Smart Contact Lenses With Embedded Camera

MOUNTAIN VIEW (CBS SF) -- Just as Google Glass is being offered Tuesday for a one-day sale to the general public following a test period, the company has plans for eyewear technology that could make the Glass device obsolete.

Google has a patent application for smart contact lenses which would feature an imaging device – essentially a micro camera – and sensors embedded on the lenses that could be activated by blinking.

The company has already developed a prototype of smart contacts that can monitor glucose levels of diabetes patients.

The camera component is an extension of the smart contact lens project and still in the hypothetical stage.

The imaging device would theoretically allow the blind to "see" by sending image data to a remote device such as a smartphone to provide an audible alert, according to a report by Patent Bolt.

The lenses could also be used by law enforcement as facial recognition feature without the suspect being aware of it, the report said.

Another application could be allowing the user to zoom in on what they are looking at without using binoculars, according to Patent Bolt.

The report said Google originally filed their patent application in the fourth quarter of 2012, and the U.S. Patent Office published the application earlier this month.

It is not known how soon Google plans to bring either smart lens project to market.



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