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Musician and entrepreneur Will.i.am has teamed up with Honeywell and Jose Fernandez to create a nearly $300 smart face mask with built-in headphones.
If you don’t recognize Fernandez’s name, you might recognize his work. He’s a prolific superhero costume designer in the film industry, and was most recently the designer behind SpaceX’s spacesuits.
Now, Fernandez has pivoted from film and space to create a new smart mask with Will.i.am, who’s had experience in the hardware and wearables industries.
Will.i.am’s dabbling in tech products has spanned from a 2012 flashy iPhone camera case, to a 2014 smartwatch widely panned by critics, to a 2017 augmented reality app that brought his own comic book to life.
Now, the musician and entrepreneur is making another bet on the tech industry with a medical care twist.
The reusable Xupermask will be the crossroads of Will.i.am’s two expertise areas: music and tech.
With vaccine rollout continuing and the hopeful end of the COVID-19 in near sight, you might think this latest product is a late bet on face masks. However, Will.i.am disagrees.
He believes face masks will stick around even after COVID-19 is over, similar to how countries hit by SARS continued to wear masks years after the pandemic, according to an interview with the New York Times.
Source: The New York Times
The bluetooth-capable masks’ futuristic appearance reflects its high-tech features, which include LED lights and three-speed fans for more air flow.
Gone are the days of wearing a mask and pair of headphones at the same time. The Xupermask will also come with noise canceling earbuds, a microphone, and volume adjustments.
The masks are still lightweight despite all of these technological advancements, according to its maker.
The Xupermask kit also comes with three-months worth of HEPA filters for a literal added layer of protection.
But if you’re prone to forgetting when to charge your devices, this mask may not be the best fit for you.
Unlike our everyday medical masks, the Supermask’s batteries will have to be recharged via a USB-C cable after seven hours of use.
The new smart mask will be available for purchase in black or white with two different sizes beginning Thursday.
Originally published at https://www.businessinsider.com/face-mask-spacex-spacesuit-covid-william-honeywell-2021-4 on .