kludgeEyeNetra is introducing a series of products and a service that will allow you to determine your eyeglass prescription using a Smartphone. MIT Technology Review reports on the service, “Blink”, that will utilize add-on devices to smartphones – operated by a technician –  to determine your eyeglass prescription in your home or office (the actual prescription will be written by an optometrist from the results of the in-home measurements, then emailed to the patient).

We have written several blogs about how technology is being packaged to attach to a smartphone, effectively turning the smartphone into a medical device. Obviously, this trend is continuing. The term “smartphone” has actually outlived its relevance: making and receiving calls is a tiny part of what these hand-held computers do. Designers have not capitalized on this opportunity. Most of the designs we see are forcing technology to adapt to the form factor of the phone, in a very kludgey manner. Instead of designing things that attach to phones, why not incorporate the phone, as a module, into a form that is more appropriate for the specific task the device is designed to aid? From a user’s perspective, that approach would yield much better results, both aesthetically and ergonomically, than those we’ve seen to date.