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14 June 2017

Is the Galaxy S8 Hazardous to Your Eyesight? Samsung Users Claim Iris Scanner Is Causing Eye Discomfort

Multiple owners of the handset have reported feeling sharp
pains and dizziness after using the iris scanner since
purchasing the device - and it is so profound that some have
reverted back to the fingerprint scanner.
Is the Galaxy S8 hazardous to your eyesight? Samsung users claim iris scanner is causing eye discomfort
12 June 2017

  • Multiple Galaxy S8 users have complained about pain after using the iris scanner
  • Some noted they felt dizzy and other said the pain happened after the first use 
  • Experts noted that eyes are sensitive to infrared radiation and damage can occur

t was meant to be Samsung’s ‘saving grace’, but users have found an issue just two months after the Galaxy S8 has hit the market.

Multiple owners of the handset have reported feeling sharp pains and dizziness after using the iris scanner since purchasing the device – and it is so profound that some have reverted back to the fingerprint scanner.

Although the South Korean firm has deemed the technology safe, studies have found that the protein found in the lens of the eye is very sensitive to the infrared radiation used in the biometric and when exposed, can lead to cataract.

The Galaxy S8 was released less than year after the Note 7 fiasco, when dozens of users reported the handset was catching fire and exploding.

Following the disaster, the South Korean firm seemed to put all of its energy into manufacturing a smartphone with a sleek design and cutting-edge technology – as a piece offering to its users.

However, a group of Galaxy S8 users have flocked to Reddit to investigate strange discomfort or pain after using the iris scanner.

Those in the thread posted that they had experienced discomfort or pain in their eye after using the technology – and one noted that he felt it after the first use.

'I held off because the warnings were pretty dire. Tried it after MKHD said Iris scan worked well,' the Reddit user 'TheAmazinAaron' shared.

'The first use caused definite sharp pain in the nerve behind my eye.

'I won't be using it again and Samsung should look into this.'

But Samsung maintains that its iris scanner is not harmful to eyes.

A spokesperson for Samsung said: 'Samsung takes consumer health and safety very seriously and would like to reassure our customers that our iris scanning technology strictly complies with the industry safety standards set by the International Electronical Committee (IEC).

'Although each person is different, in very rare cases, a limited number of users might have experienced slight discomfort from the use of iris scanners. In addition to implementing the highest safety levels available on the market, the device will automatically turn off if the IR LED light is on for more than nine seconds.

'Samsung recommends that our customers follow the safety instructions for iris scanner use as stated in our user manuals and if anyone has any concerns, they should contact their local Samsung service centre.'...

DANGERS OF INFRARED RADIATION

Researches had discovered that the longer a subject was exposed to infrared radiation, the more enzyme activity was found to decrease.

The team had concluded that the technology does have the ability to cause corneal opacity, burns on the retina, breakdown of blood-aqueous barrier and delayed cataract.

And the decrease of total lens proteins was more pronounced in the group consisting of animals which were decapitated after 1 hour of exposure, which may be due to cataract formation.

Researchers also explained that when IR radiation is incident on the eye, it is absorbed by the cornea and converted into heat which is then conducted to the lens and induces cataract.

According to Janet Voke with Nova Southeastern University, IR raises the temperature of the anterior eye.

The lens is only able to absorb a small amount of the radiation and for it to cause damage, ‘the overall exposure level would need to be high’

Voke also noted that damage could occurs as the ‘result of smaller repeated doses’ - which may be similar to the amount your eyes are exposed to while opening your smartphone.

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