AIM: The purpose of this review is to examine the applications of novel digital technology domains for the screening and management of patients with diabetic retinopathy (DR). METHODS A PubMed engine search was performed, using the terms "Telemedicine", "Digital health", "Telehealth", "Telescreening", "Artificial intelligence", "Deep learning", "Smartphone", "Triage", "Screening", "Home-based", "Monitoring", "Ophthalmology", "Diabetes", "Diabetic Retinopathy", "Retinal imaging". Full-text English language studies from January 1, 2010, to February 1, 2022, and reference lists were considered for the conceptual framework of this review. RESULTS Diabetes mellitus and its eye complications, including DR, are particularly well suited to digital technologies, providing an ideal model for telehealth initiatives and real-world applications. The current development in the adoption of telemedicine, artificial intelligence and remote monitoring as an alternative to or in addition to traditional forms of care will be discussed. CONCLUSIONS Advances in digital health have created an ecosystem ripe for telemedicine in the field of DR to thrive. Stakeholders and policymakers should adopt a participatory approach to ensure sustained implementation of these technologies after the COVID-19 pandemic. This article belongs to the Topical Collection "Diabetic Eye Disease", managed by Giuseppe Querques.