Samsung and Sony's patent attorneys have been quite busy recently, but not filing some new smartphone-related documentation, but attempting to acquire a patent for a smart contact lens. More specifically, not long after Samsung filed a patent for a so-called "Gear Blink" lens at the South Korean patent office, Sony visited the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and presented them with a request for patenting its very own contact lens with an accompanying storage medium.
As you may have guessed, the main ability of these lenses is the ability to snap pictures and record video which is then saved on some kind of a teeny tiny storage disk. The pictures are literally taken in the blink of an eye as users of the aforementioned smart lenses only have to blink to snap them, though it's yet unclear how is one supposed to order his or her lenses to record actual video. Maybe blink twice or squint like really aggressively? Whatever the answer may be, Sony did go into a bit more detail regarding its concept in the documentation it filed to the USPTO, as the company revealed it's planning on developing an autofocus system and optical image stabilization (OIS) for its smart lens. Furthermore, the Japanese consumer electronics manufacturer also described some kind of a tilt sensor used to open a menu on the lens which shows additional options for controlling it. Impressive? Wait, there's more – Sony even claims its creation will be able to send recorded image and video files to an external device, though it's yet unclear whether one will have to remove the contacts from his or her eyes in order to do so, or just give some random PC a significant look.
All kidding aside, what Sony describes definitely sounds impressive but there's no way to tell how far away we are from using a transparent camera and an accompanying storage disk the size of a cornea. As the process of acquiring a patent can take at least months, if not years, it's unlikely we'll see smart contacts anytime soon. It's also basically impossible to predict who will pioneer manufacturing of the actual technology as numerous other tech giants like Google are also working on their very own smart contact lenses.