IpVenture is releasing health monitoring eyewear to help slow the spread of COVID-19. To that end, the new eyewear tracks key biometrics like heart rate, oxygen levels, and coughing frequency to gauge the likelihood that the wearer is infected. If it believes that the user has been exposed, it will prompt them to self-quarantine and seek out a COVID-19 test.
The eyewear is also able to read the temperature of anyone that the user encounters. The feature turns the eyewear into an early warning system, since it will send an alert if it spots someone with a fever, or someone who has reported positive on a contact tracing program. The technology is geared towards those who face the highest risk of infection, including frontline workers and students who are being asked to return to in-person classes.
In that regard, IpVenture argues that its solution is far more affordable than some of the alternatives. While other COVID-19 smartglasses can cost thousands of dollars for a single pair, IpVenture (in collaboration with IngenioSpec) will allow its partners to license the technology for a nominal fee for the next 12 months in the hopes that it will give medical researchers more time to develop a vaccine.
Until then, the eyewear will offer ongoing utility to anyone who does become infected. The system essentially turns into a virtual assistant that reminds the wearer to stay hydrated and observe quarantine guidelines, and to seek out medical assistance if their symptoms worsen.
IpVenture is not the only company trying to leverage hands-free eyewear to improve public health outcomes during the pandemic. Vuzix added thermal detection capabilities to its M400 Smart Glasses as early as March, and later partnered with TensorMark on a solution that will allow venue operators to use the Vuzix Blade to screen people’s immunity credentials.