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Mojo Ceasing Work On Their Smart Lens
It is with great sadness that we have to announce that Mojo – the US tech company – has ceased work on its ground-breaking smart contact lens, and will now not be pursuing the development.
The ground-breaking Mojo Lens employs a small microLED display the size of a sand grain and smart sensors powered by solid-state batteries embedded inside a scleral lens that also corrects the user’s eyesight to transmit crucial information. Mojo Lens gives users access to a wealth of relevant information by superimposing digital information onto our physical environment. The world’s densest, most dynamic display and special, purpose-built microelectronics are used by Mojo Lens to seamlessly layer digital images and information into the user’s view. Its intelligent software recognises the work, play, and athletic activities you are involved in, enabling it to offer important information without interfering with or disturbing the user. Powering the microLED display is an ARM processor with 5GHz radio, IMU and complete with an accelerometer, gyro, and magnetometer, medical-grade micro-batteries, and a power management circuit with wireless recharging components. The display itself is a minuscule 0.48mm, with just 1.8 microns between the pixels, giving excellent resolution.
The Mojo lens was destined to be a real ground-breaking device that would display everything from emails and documents to directions and other useful information without the need to look at a specific device as with a mobile phone-type product. This true head-up display could have a huge number of applications and could be the start of other body-worn devices, but the company has now announced that it is stopping work on the development.
Now, due to financial reasons rather than technical ones, the company is planning to cease work on the lens aspect and focus its efforts on developing the concept of the microLED for other applications. As a consequence of this, Mojo intends to lay-off around three-quarters of its workforce. In a short communication, the company claims that their inability to continue seeking money to develop its smart contact lens is the cause of the shift. Mojo Vision has struggled to acquire more private finance due to the weakening global economy, excessively competitive capital markets, and the unproven market potential for advanced augmented reality solutions. Mojo will cease any further research into the lens for this reason alone, and instead consider other applications for the micro-display. The innovation that Mojo have developed for the eye-wear has many other applications and the sheer density of the display means that Mojo are likely to be at the forefront of display technology.
While the device was still only at prototype level, with a working example having been by the Mojo CEO as a proof of concept, there was still a long way to go to actually make a saleable product. Because of its invasive nature, the lens would have needed extensive trials and testing before it could be unleashed on the public, but even then, it was not an assured seller. The sheer notion of placing something in an eye was likely to be difficult for many, and take-up of such a device was going to be a slow process. Not having a good return is always going to put off investors regardless of the potential and this seems to be the problem with the Mojo device.
The idea is a good one though and while we are not likely to see devices such as this on general sale any time soon, with the technology generally proven, the makings of a usable device are all there. Even if Mojo never pick this up again, it is likely that someone else will, and we will see the likes of this wearable tech at some point. Perhaps the time isn’t right at present, but we are hoping that it won’t be too long before many of us are wearing smart contact lenses regularly.