EPGL, a medical supply company headquartered in Irvine, CA, is well known for its innovative contact lens designs. The team at EPGL is always on the quest to create the best technological solutions for today's vision problems. Recently, EPGL has been working with tech giant Apple to create certain augmented reality iOS applications.
Michael Hayes, the president of EPGL, told reporters that the app they are working on will be able to project an image right onto a person's contact lenses. The image would be directed to the lens' perimeter so the augmented reality technology could flood into the whole of the lens. The three positives of this app are that it can be used on any elastic material, it only needs a little bit of power to operate fully, and it can be adjusted very easily.
EPGL hopes this app will project very clean images onto contact lenses. Hayes also said that the images on the app could be designed to be redirected into a patient's retina by using the contact lenses' prisms. This could potentially help those who have vision cuts due to an injury or a stroke.
Since this app technology is going straight into the contact lenses, it is one of the least conspicuous visual aid technologies in recent days. Of course, Google Glass has been touted for its augmented reality features, but some people have complained about the obtrusiveness of this product. Also, Google Glass users are often restricted from using this device in certain locations. That's mainly due to the fact that Google Glass can be used as a covert surveillance device.
By investing in EPGL, Apple is certainly making it clear that it wants to be a major player in the augmented and virtual reality space. Apple executives do not want to fall behind Facebook and Google's lead in augmented reality. After seeing Facebook purchase the Oculus Rift and Google reveal its investments in developing glucose detecting contact lenses, Apple must have felt it necessary to get more involved in this growing tech field.
Tim Cook, the present CEO of Apple, told reporters that Apple is thrilled to be making deals with companies involved in augmented reality. He also said he believes that augmented and virtual reality is not a "niche" industry. Cook believes there are many real-world applications of this technology that Apple wants to be a part of, especially in the medical industry.
By officially partnering with EPGL, Apple is showing to the world that it wants to be a major player in both the medical and augmented reality fields. More deals like this one could dramatically change treatment options available to patients in the future.
EPGL currently holds patents for all of their technologies. Some of these include devices that can build and store energy from blinking, auto-focus devices for contact lenses, and circuit integration technologies for contact lenses.