will.i.am has partnered with tech conglomerate Honeywell to launch a Bluetooth-capable face mask.
The Black Eyed Peas rapper, The Voice judge and entrepreneur’s latest venture – dubbed the Xupermask – is a joint collaboration between himself, Honeywell and designer Jose Fernandez, who created Elon Musk’s SpaceX suits.
In addition to Bluetooth connectivity, the “smart mask” will feature dual three-speed fans, a HEPA filtration system, LED lights, noise-cancelling headphones and a rechargeable, seven-hour battery.
It’s also capable of playing music and taking phone calls, and has a decidedly futuristic look – see a preview below.
The Xupermask is set to arrive on April 8 directly, sold direct-to-consumer via its own website. It will sell at £216 (US $299).
“We are living in sci-fi times,” Will.i.am told the New York Times in a story about the new masks.
“[The pandemic] his straight out of a friggin’ movie. But we are wearing masks from yesterday’s movie. So I wanted to make a mask to fit the era that we’re in.”
It’s far from will.i.am’s first foray into tech – other projects have included his much-maligned Puls smartwatch and a range of “fashion” headphones. As the Times acknowledges, both products failed to take off.
The rapper’s company, i.am+, is focused on wearable products, and has acquired tech companies such as smart home brand Wink and machine learning start-up Sensiya.