This revolutionary SMART FACE MASK can transmit messages and translate speech
Japanese inventors created a Smart mask – an internet-connected face mask that transmits and translates messages.
The Japanese startup Donut Robotics has developed an innovative smart C-mask that can pass on messages and translate them from Japanese into eight other languages. It can be easily connected to a smart device via Bluetooth using a special app that can transcribe speech into text messages, make calls, or amplify the mask wearer’s voice.
The chief executive of Donut Robotics, Taisuke Ono, told Reuters:
“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.”
As per 9GAG, the Bluetooth chip inserted in the mask can connect to smartphones up to 32 feet (10 meters) away. The product’s developers are hoping the smart mask could make the ‘new normal’ easier, especially in locations including hospitals and offices where communication is crucial.
It all started when engineers were looking for solutions to help the company survive throughout the coronavirus pandemic. By the time COVID-19 emerged, they had just made a contract to supply robot guides and translators to Tokyo’s Haneda Airport. However, this product wasn’t giving them the stability they needed as air travel collapsed during the pandemic. Luckily, they had another idea in mind.
The first 5,000 C-masks will be shipped to buyers in Japan starting in September.
Furthermore, they are expected to be sold in China, the United States, and Europe due to the strong interest.
Although C-mask is a brand new product, the translation software it uses was created four years ago by engineer Shunsuke Fujibayashi. His technology is based on interpreting speech by mapping face muscles.
Despite its cutting-edge technology, one smart mask will cost only about $40. This way, the company is aiming at a mass market that did not exist until a few months ago. They are also working towards generating revenue from subscriber services offered via an app that users will download.
To be able to fund the project, the chief executive sold Donut Robotics shares through the Japanese crowdfunding site Fundinno. For the development process of the smart mask, he raised 28 million yen (262,940 USD), although his initial goal was to raise only 7 million yen (65,735 USD).