PARIS--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Today, Materialise NV (NASDAQ:MTLS), HOYA Vision Care Company and Hoet Design Studio are proud to launch the world’s first vision-centric 3D-tailored eyewear. Yuniku by HOYA enables individualized lens and frame design, with a sophisticated end-to-end digital supply chain that is set to transform the eyewear industry. For the first time ever, both lenses and frames can be designed and positioned to fit an individual’s unique facial features, functional needs, and vision requirements, resulting in an enhanced vision experience, increased comfort, and new possibilities for personalization. Yuniku is a Silmo D’Or nominee in the Equipment category at Silmo 2016 in Paris.
“When 3D Printing meets the right application and the right partners, it has the potential to turn around an entire industry,” states Alireza Parandian, Global Business Strategist – Wearables, Materialise. “Materialise has helped this happen before in the hearing aid industry, when our custom software enabled the digital manufacturing of in-ear hearing aids to go from 20% of the total to nearly 100% in just two years. I believe Yuniku could be equally momentous for eyewear.”
For opticians, Yuniku is an opportunity to deliver more effective interaction and service to their clients, enhancing their buying experience, while the use of 3D printing also opens new distribution possibilities and eliminates the stock risks common to the eyewear industry. For the end-consumer, Yuniku means eyewear truly tailored to their unique visual, comfort and aesthetic needs.
“Yuniku is an exciting step forward in custom eyewear. By capitalizing on advances in 3D printing technology, we have removed the limitations posed by traditional spectacles,” says Jon Warrick, Vice President Global Marketing, HOYA Vision Care. “For the first time, wearers can enjoy the ultimate in optical performance, without compromising on style or fit.”
Bieke Hoet of Hoet Design Studio added, “As an eyewear designer, I’m already familiar with how 3D Printing can revolutionize this industry. Now with Yuniku, I feel that we are able to share this potential with the world.”
How Yuniku works
Conventional eyewear design does not allow for optimal lens performance because opticians face restrictions in lens placement resulting from the frame chosen by the customer. To turn this around, Materialise and HOYA co-created a custom 3D scanner and software platform, directly linked to Materialise’s Certified Additive Manufacturing factory. Using 3D scanning, parametric design automation, and 3D Printing, the Yuniku platform designs the frame around the ideal position of the optical lenses.
The Yuniku experience starts with a scan to capture facial features, and a short questionnaire to determine the wearer’s visual needs. Advanced software designed by HOYA uses facial and visual data to determine the ideal position of the lenses in relation to the eyes and communicates this with Materialise’s software, which in turn tailors the frame around the lenses according to the wearer’s unique facial characteristics. Frame design, color and finish can all be adjusted to match the customer’s individual style, with the integrated software solutions working to ensure that both ideal lens positioning and fit are preserved. Additionally, a screen will display a virtual image of the customer in the selected eyewear, ensuring complete satisfaction with the end result.
The base frame collection for Yuniku comes from Hoet Design Studio, pioneer in innovative eyewear designs. As Yuniku is an open platform, further branded frames, from both Hoet and other designers, will be added to the collection.
The range features an exclusive selection of frame designs, colors and finishes. These are complemented by a choice of a premium progressive, single vision or indoor lens solution.
Materialise incorporates more than 25 years of 3D printing experience into a range of software solutions and 3D printing services, which together form the backbone of 3D printing technologies. Materialise’s open and flexible solutions enable players in a wide variety of industries, including healthcare, automotive, aerospace, art and design, and consumer goods, to build innovative 3D printing applications that aim to make the world a better and healthier place. Headquartered in Belgium, with branches worldwide, Materialise combines the largest group of software developers in the industry with one of the largest 3D printing facilities in the world. For additional information, please visit: www.materialise.com.
Founded in 1941 in Tokyo, Japan, HOYA is a global med-tech company and the leading supplier of innovative high-tech and medical products. HOYA is active in the fields of healthcare and information technology providing eyeglasses, medical endoscopes, intraocular lenses, optical lenses as well as key components for semiconductor devices, LCD panels and HDDs. With over 150 offices and subsidiaries worldwide, HOYA currently employs a multi-national workforce of over 34,000 people. For additional information, please visit: www.yuniku.com.
With more than 25 years of experience in (eyewear) design, being founders of the brand THEO for which HOET introduced the first laser cut frames and chemical etched frames, the HOET design studio is a synonym for innovation. Eyewear designs created from the heart, driven by technology is making their creations standing out.
The studio is also pioneer in bringing custom made 3D printed frames to the optical market. Essential to our design process is extensive research, thorough knowledge of materials and the talent to adapt old techniques into new ones. Their expertise is offered in freelance design assignments for companies that want to include an exclusive line of eyewear to enhance their brand or identity. For additional information, please visit: www.hoet-design.com.