The EyeQue won a CES innovation award, and it’s pretty easy to see why. This review is going to be a bit different in that I’m going through piece by piece playing with what was sent, and also checking over the course of a few weeks for an eventual follow up article.
I was sent an EyeQue Vision Monitoring kit, and thus far I have worked with the EyeQue VisionCheck device to the point where I feel I’m commenting correctly on it. I’ll get to the other items in the kit that shipped (the Insight, the PDCheck (eh, you know what that is but I’ll mention it,) but wanted to tackle the VisionCheck as its own thing as it was my main interest.
TL;DR – experience as a colorblind man, relatively new to glasses, using the VisionCheck device from the EyeQue Vision Monitoring Kit and waiting on glasses with its suggestion.
If this were a recipe this would be the life story part you skip to get to the
I went most of my life with 20/20 vision. I had a brief spell 20 years ago where I had a very weak prescription that suddenly I didn’t need (eyestrain? Never got a good answer on that.) The past 3 or 4 years I have almost lost an eye about once every two months usually due to something my kids do, it became a running joke they were intent on blinding me one way or the other. One year ago I got an eye infection – most likely from one of their failed attempts to blind me.
It came, it went, when it cleared I had dry eye, and when that cleared I couldn’t focus any more. After a couple of weeks of severe problems where it seemed to be getting better then went right back to bad, and walking around like a pirate, I got into an eye exam.
I’m going to skip most of this, but I was left with being told that I’m just old, my lens’s elasticity had given out, and welcome to a world of glasses and contacts. That it had happened over what seemed to be two weeks in both eyes was dismissed as it probably happened and I was compensating without knowing it. Eyes were perfectly healthy other than that they now focus differently and I went from being able to read street signs at a quarter mile in the dark to a lot of things being pretty fuzzy at distance with one eye and being fuzzy near me with the other. Basically it was a speech the eye doc told on a regular basis day in and day out.
I got glasses via Zinni Optical because, well, I’m cheap and $12 is $12 and they look fine. I mention this here only because EyeQue evidently has a relationship with Zenni. This was done before I had even heard of EyeQue. Just putting it out there.
I also mention this because my first glasses didn’t seem quite right but I was close to perfect vision again. BTW, Zinni made the glasses correctly, my eye exam had the PD incorrect as I later verified by a printout, a measuring tool, and I’m betting when I get to it the PD measuring tool on the vision monitoring kit. Yeah, I paid a professional for that measurement.
That part of the recipe that’s so far down you’ve now altered the page’s bounce rate leading to better SEO
So the EyeQue VisionCheck is a Bluetooth device that sits on your cell phone and works with an app they provide. I could get zero photos of what you see looking through the thing, but the test is basically using two of the three buttons on the back of it to make two different color lines overlap. Once they overlap you press the third button, and the test moves on to different lines. There’s haptic and voice feedback and instructions so you should be pretty good. There are a lot of instructions as a note, but once you’ve got it you’re set.
You initially repeat this test three times in each eye before it is confident enough to give you the prescription numbers it believes you need.
One of the options when you’re setting up the app is to enter in the numbers if you already have your prescription. I didn’t as I wanted to make sure the app was being honest and wasn’t cheating. It doesn’t appear to have been cheating.
So, as I recall there’s a red and a yellow line and the object is to make them overlap to form green. Being a red/green colorblind fellow, this was more difficult than it should have been, however it was doable. If you can see the two lines, you can see when they’ve become one line. If you’re not sure press a button and see if the line gets wider or thinner.
It took a bit, the colorblindness slowed me as once the red and yellow overlap it turns green or something (yes, I know red and yellow don’t make green,) but once I was done I had numbers. Going to say my level of colorblind = 30-40% more time required.
The numbers didn’t quite match my prescription so I contacted EyeQue and asked why it was a bit off. With what my prescription was and what the EyeQue device was indicated my right eye needed a slightly stronger prescription, and my left eye was pretty much spot on. Before jumping on that slightly stronger prescription I have done some wildly un-scientific squinting at things and determined that it might just be right.
You’re going to have to wait for my next wildly unscientific subjective test with the slightly stronger prescription. I’m told by both EyeQue and by an optometrist friend that my prescription and the numbers the EyeQue popped out are essentially doable.
So who is this for?
First off if you’re about to ask about contacts, don’t. At least in the US, for contacts you’re going to need a prescription by an eye care professional, and EyeQue doesn’t even claim to deal with contact lenses. Oh, sure you can go to a contact lens website and submit a fake prescription and they probably won’t call, but that’s on you, and really not a good idea I would assume. This is for glasses.
This also is for your whole family (ages 6+ according to the site,) so you can occasionally save an eye exam cost (eye exams in the US average from $50-100 as far as I can tell,) which would pay for the kit on first use if you’ve got three people in your family.
Should be noted occasional eye exams are important, this isn’t a tool to diagnose eye diseases, just to figure out if your eyeglass prescription needs upped a bit. If you’re experiencing vision problems, doctor. Do it. You get one set of eyeballs. If you’re wondering if your eye doctor recorded the wrong PD and a slightly too weak lens, this is for you. If you’re one of the millions of uninsured, under-insured, and people having to decide between health care and food, yeah this might also be for you and a few friends.
If you’re colorblind you might want to wait, during my discussions with customer support I’m of the idea that a slightly easier on the colorblind people version may be on the horizon in the VisionCheck2. If you can’t wait, well, it’s a little harder but I did it.
You can check out their products on the EyeQue website, there’re a few others. I will be working with the rest of what’s in the kit in the next few days.
Does my EyeQue prescription work better or worse? Going to have to find out later I’m afraid.