Samsung Electronics announced on Wednesday that old Galaxy smartphones will be repurposed as part of eye care devices for use in underprivileged areas of the world. This project is part of the Galaxy Upcycling program of the company.
Developed using the own concept of Samsung, Eyelike, or handheld fundus cameras capture pictures of the rear of the eye that is used to measure eye health. The used Galaxy smartphones are being attached to Eyelike.
The smartphone can be used to take photographs of the eyes of the patient. Then, the camera comes with a lens adapter for fundus diagnosis.
Samsung said that the smartphone makes a diagnosis based on the images using an artificial intelligence algorithm. It then employs an interface that recommends a treatment option. It checks for problems that may lead to blindness, such as glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy.
The combination of Eyelike and the Galaxy smartphone can provide more affordable diagnoses than most commercial tools and devices. Additionally, the camera’s parts are often made of recycled materials and are built to be reused easily.
Kim Sung-Koo, Vice President of Sustainable Management in Samsung Mobile, said “People around the globe face barriers to accessing fundamental health care, and we saw an opportunity to engineer smart, innovative solutions that reuse products to drive more sustainable practices and make a positive impact in our communities.”
“This program embodies Samsung’s belief that technology can enrich people’s lives and help us build a more equitable and sustainable future for all,” he added.
In partnership with the Yonsei University Health System in South Korea and the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (IAPB), Samsung has established an eye care program in India, Morocco, Papua New Guinea, and Vietnam.
The South Korean tech company reported that the Eyelike cameras are being provided to health staff in low-income areas.
As per the records of the World Health Organization (WHO), at least 2.2 billion people worldwide suffer from a kind of vision disability. According to Samsung, about half of these cases are preventable. However, most of them are not treated due to the disparities in the accessibility and cost of eye care services in many different countries.
It was also revealed that the South Korean tech company is working on a portable colposcope on the smartphone that can scan for cervical cancer. It also included in its plan the enhancement of women’s access to medical care.