Smart contact lenses are not on the market yet, but they may be soon. At least two companies are competing in this space. For the past four years, Mojo Vision has been developing Mojo Lens, a sensor-enabled contact lens that can give the wearer augmented reality viewing capability. In late 2020, the company announced a collaboration with contact lens maker Menicon to develop smart contact lens products.

This January, the company announced strategic partnerships with leading sports and fitness brands Adidas Running (running/training), Trailforks (cycling, hiking/outdoors), Wearable X (yoga), Slopes (snow sports) and 18Birdies (golf). Through these strategic partnerships and the market expertise the companies provide, Mojo Vision will explore additional smart contact lens interfaces and experiences to understand and improve the delivery of data for athletes of varying skill levels and abilities, the company said in a statement.

Mojo Vision is actively working with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) through its Breakthrough Devices Program, a voluntary program designed to provide safe and timely access to medical devices that can help treat irreversibly debilitating diseases or conditions.

Another contender in the emerging smart contact lens category is InWith. The company’s believes its electronic soft contact lens platform, which is based on proprietary stretchable circuitry, will appeal to many contact lens wearers. The first applications of the technology will be “tunable vision” via mobile device and “augmented vision” coupled with mobile device control, the company said in a recent announcement.

The technology may offer wearers “fully immersive Metaverse viewing,” according to InWith. The company said it is working with top Fortune 50 companies presently to secure and introduce the first viable iterations of this technology in the market with the backing of several hundred patents in 2022.

“The market is still in its infancy,” said Jerome A. Legerton, OD, FAAO, co-founder, director, chief clinical and regulatory officer of Innovega Inc., which is preparing to release a hybrid smart glasses and contact lens system called eMacula. “There is considerable product development and a lessor amount of clinical development. Smart contact lenses will happen albeit slowly due to the challenges to achieve close to the comfort and vision of gold standard contact lenses and the regulatory challenges for new indications.”