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Eye apps claim to improve your visionWe're often told staring at screens for extended periods can weaken eyesight. But now some tech firms say using a mobile app can actually improve vision, and even eliminate the need for reading glasses. CNET's Kara Tsuboi explains how these apps work...
[MUSIC] As we reach our mid 40s, doctors say our eyes gradually weaken. Just like other muscles, what if we could improve our eyesight to the point of not needing glasses by exercising our eyes? That's the aim of a handful of mobile apps, like GlassesOff and Ultimeyes. That present games, and exercises to retrain the way brain interprets images. We can potentially, improve the image, processing unit in our brain, to do a much better interpretation, of whatever visual image coming in from the eye. GlassesOff is a free download, but access to the program costs sixty dollars. Shai Novik claims when the app is used correctly, 90% of users will no longer need to wear their reading glasses. I'll play the game 3 times a week, 15 minutes each time, for approximately 3 months. And then you reach in most cases, the status of glasses off. You don't, you're really independent of reading glasses. At that point in time you are, have the option to move to the maintenance stage. Medical experts say there is some validity in these claims as the brain can be continually improved with practice. I think that's what these apps really are talking about is not so much improving the eye but improving the brain because the brain is. Actually as or more important than the eye in terms of developing high levels of visual function. At Stanford University researchers have developed their own vision related app called SightBook. It offers a series of vision tests a patient can do at home in order to help diagnose problems. This is gonna be in very much the way that we all have a lot of our care rendered in the future. And I don't mean 20 years from now I mean. In the next year or two or three or five years. Giving us yet another reason to keep looking at our screens. In San Francisco, I'm Kara Tsuboi, CNET.com, for CBS news.