among the many changes the COVID-19 pandemic has brought, wearing a face mask is one that has received lots of attention, with designers and companies around the world trying to make it better. in the past months we’ve seen proposals that include making them transparent while others have created new biodegradable materials to help with the waste problem. but we haven’t seen an internet connected one… until now.
dubbed the C-mask, this new face mask by japanese startup donut robotics can record conversations, transcribe them into text messages via bluetooth, and translate japanese into eight languages: english, chinese, french, korean, thai, bahasa, spanish and vietnamese. you can also use it to make calls and to amplify the wearer’s voice, making it very useful as wearing masks can sometimes interfere with people being heard.
donut robotics has redefined the face mask by adding connectivity to it, a built-in amplifier and a speech translator.to use it, just place the C-mask over any standard face mask and connected via bluetooth to your smartphone or tablet via a dedicated app. the project is currently seeking funding on japanese crowdfunding site, fundinno, where it has already raised over 28 million yen (over 260.000 USD dollars).
we worked hard for years to develop a robot and we have used that technology to create a product that responds to how the coronavirus has reshaped society,’ taisuke one, donut robotics CEO said to reuters. the masks will be first launched in september in japan with 5,000 units being shipped at a price of 3,980 Japanese yen (around $37 USD). the company aims to expand worldwide by selling masks in the united states, europe and china. overall, the C-maskoffers a contactless way to use your smartphone by connecting to it via bluetooth.