Believe it or not, you don’t actually have to wait until your next appointment with the optician to learn how good your eyesight is. In fact, the answers you seek could be available from the smartphone or tablet that you use every day. Here are a few apps that you could use for checking and, if you do detect any issues, improving your eyesight. And perhaps the best thing is that they are all free! So, you have nothing to lose.
If you haven’t been to the optician for a while and are wondering how your eyesight is holding up, this is a good app to start with. You can use it to test various aspects of your sight; you can, for example, test for visual acuity, astigmatism or colour blindness. Ultimately, the app can inform you whether a visit to the optician is indeed in order and even the location of the nearest optician to you.
Eye Check by Boots Opticians
Similar to the Vision Test app and even from the same developer, Rocktime Ltd, like Vision Test, it enables you to put your eyes through a series of tests; however, even by the app description’s admission, this isn’t a replacement for a full professional eye check. Instead, it’s largely just a taster of what to expect with one.
EyeChart – Vision Screening App
In recent history, one of the most common charts used by opticians to measure visual clarity has been what is called the Snellen chart. With this app, you can test your own vision by using the Snellen chart, but also choose to regularly randomise the letters displayed. This helps to prevent you memorising the letters on a static chart, which could obviously adversely affect the accuracy of the readings.
Near Vision Test
A rather simple but self-explanatory app, this is intended specifically for testing the quality of your near vision. Poor near vision is what you probably suffer from if you find yourself often struggling to read at close distance. This app can also, if it decides that you indeed require new eyewear, recommend what glasses power to opt for. Before you download this app, however, keep in mind the disclaimers in the app description – including that, if you have significant astigmatism, you could find this app less than effective.
Availability: iPhone, iPad
Eye conditions such as retinal detachments and central serous choroidopathy can be detected early, when they could still be treatable, with regular use of this app. In fact, the developer, Ossibus Software, advises that individuals with macular degeneration use this app to test their eyes on a daily basis – and that, if they discern any changes, they should immediately contact an optometrist.
You should, however, take account of the disclaimers that often appear in these apps’ descriptions, and particularly heed that you should not treat use of these apps as any replacement for a full, proper eye check-up by your optician.