Wearables

Samsung's Relúmĭno glasses bring smarter vision for partially sighted people

Samsung's Relúmĭno glasses bri...
The Relúmĭno project now has hardware of its own
The Relúmĭno project now has hardware of its own
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The Relúmĭno project now has hardware of its own
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The Relúmĭno project now has hardware of its own
The glasses connect to a smartphone running the Relúmĭno app
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The glasses connect to a smartphone running the Relúmĭno app
The app's software uses a variety of image processing methods to improve vision
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The app's software uses a variety of image processing methods to improve vision

Wearables might be handy in helping some of us lose a few pounds, but for people with significant health or medical problems they can be much more important. Like the Relúmĭno Glasses from Samsung, a smart visual aid that's going to be on show at CES 2018 in Las Vegas next week.

The glasses build on the Relúmĭno app that Samsung demoed at Mobile World Congress in February. Then, Samsung only had an app that required a phone and a Gear VR headset; now, the Relúmĭno concept has hardware all its own for a more comfortable and streamlined appearance, though the user still needs to provide the phone.

The inspiration behind Relúmĭno comes from the fact that 86 percent of people with visual impairments – some 217 million worldwide – aren't completely blind, and the majority of them list television as their favorite form of entertainment. Samsung engineers set out to provide something that could use the power of the modern-day smartphone to create a lightweight, simple to use, and (perhaps most important of all) inexpensive visual aid.

There are four modes to the Relúmĭno app and glasses, each using image processing software to enhance vision. Regular mode helps to better define shapes by making outlines more visually prominent, reducing blurriness, while Color Invert mode is designed for reading text, inverting black-on-white text and enhancing contrast.

Partial vision mode is designed for those who have central or peripheral vision loss, filling in the blind spots in a user's vision with image remapping. So, for example, those who experience tunnel vision get to see more of the world squeezed into that tunnel.

Finally, Display Color Filter mode works a lot like sunglasses, reducing the glare of certain colors and improving vision along the way. The Gear VR app was able to switch between modes based on head movements (looking down to read a book, for instance), but it's not clear yet whether the new glasses have the same feature.

The app's software uses a variety of image processing methods to improve vision
The app's software uses a variety of image processing methods to improve vision

What the new device will certainly do is make Relúmĭno easier to use outside – it's probably not the best idea to walk around with a Gear VR strapped to your head, but these new glasses are the same shape and size as regular specs. Samsung says the new hardware helps people use Relúmĭno "more comfortably and discreetly" than before.

As hardware shrinks and software gets smarter, this isn't the only visual aid we're seeing appear on the market, though without the might of a company like Samsung behind the initiative it's hard to get anything through to consumers. The Relúmĭno Glasses look to have enough to get there at some point.

Fresh out of Samsung's Creative Lab though, the glasses are still very much at the prototype stage, so we don't know yet when they will be available or how much they will cost. No doubt plenty of demos will be given at the Consumer Electronics Show over the next week or so. In the meantime, check out Samsung's Relúmĭno video below.

Source: Samsung

How Samsung Created its Vision-Enhancing Relúmĭno App

3 comments
Marty2c
Hello from the great Pacific Northwet, Say, how do you download that Relumino app? I have the Gear VR goggles, an S8+' and Oculus loaded and running... but after two days of battling it out with Samsung and Oculus, and after many repeated attempts to get Relumino loaded; even they don't know what is wrong... except maybe a software glitch. I am legally blind and found this is as an alternative to paying $2500 for Iris Vision VR glasses which use the same exact hardware, but with an S7. Is there a fix for this? Thanks! Martin
Marty2c
Praise the Lord! After one last chance Eater Sunday night.... the Relulmino app is up n running! It was that authorization code that balled things up... so Oculus sent a new code in all caps and it worked! Once Relumino got loaded I could read a Gideon pocket bible, the address line on my monitor, and read a newspaper headline from three feet away... all things I could never do before! And thats just the beginning! How about a refridgerator magnet from five feet away and go right to a wrapper label without changing the zoom? I'm simply blown away!
jean-laurent
Hello, I installed the Relumino app on my Galaxy S7 Edge with Gear VR headset. I was able to start today (July 2018) the first tests with my 86-year-old mother, who has a severe dry macula (she still has 5% central vision in each eye). At first sight, the Outline enhancement function does not help it. The function of reading text (Color invert) deserves more tests, but does not seem really effective for her. On the other hand, the function "Partial view / Blindspot" is really interesting (it is for this function that I installed Relumino). From this first and short test, it seems possible to improve (slightly) her vision. Obviously, for an 86-year-old grandmother, wearing the Gear VR helmet, making adjustments, and even figuring out what the right "blind spot" settings would be, it's not that simple. For my part, I find the definition of the S7 Edge with the Gear VR rather low - and Relumino pauses after 30 minutes to cool the S7 ! In short, there is hope to improve her vision, and especially this research seems to me really to be on the right track. The use of Relumino with the Gear VR makes it possible besides to try this for a modest cost, for owners of an S7-S8-S9. The project "Relumino glasses", much lighter and better adapted, is interesting. Obviously it would be much more expensive - it would be a real market - but I can only encourage that ! The first idea of improvement that came to my mind as soon as I read the instructions is : Allow to transform the circles (from the blind spot and its "transfer") into directional ellipses. This would require "only" the compression or stretching of each of the two circles, then the rotation of the ellipses thus formed. The defined areas would be much more precise, using these two functions which seem to me quite simple... ... the next step would obviously be to be able to draw two precise polygons. It would be a real plus for the future glasses, which could even be finely regulated by consultation with an oculist. Regarding the function "Outline", I have not found any adjustment of the intensity of the reinforcement of the lines, independently of that of the luminosity, etc. In conclusion, a lot of thanks to the developers. Jean-Laurent Regamey, Geneva (Switzerland)