I’ll be honest, nothing about that title is even remotely predictable. In fact, it gets weirder with each passing word. You wouldn’t expect Will.i.am to release a medical product, all the more so, through it to team up with Honeywell … but together the rapper and OEM conglomerates collaborated around a mask that combines the best of both sides. The face mask called XUPERMASK, which costs $ 299, comes with a dual fan with three speeds and HEPA filters, but also includes Bluetooth headphones with sound-removing sound and a 7-hour battery life. I’ll be honest, other than the association at Will.i.am, the mask really looks pretty futuristic (it comes in co-founding by Hollywood costume designer Jose Fernandez, who also designed suits for SpaceX astronauts). The fact that it was built by Honeywell gives it a good dose of credibility, and I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I could actually see myself wearing one of them.
XUPERMASK is trying to turn face masks into a bit of pop culture. It’s certainly not fluffy … the mask awaits FDA approval, and comes with replaceable HEPA filters manufactured by Honeywell – a company built on designing the world’s largest HVAC systems. The pop-cultural element comes from rapper and Black Eyed Peas member Will.i.am, which aims to turn XUPERMASK into a renegade pair of wireless headphones.
As for the design part of the face mask, XUPERMASK behaves universally, thanks to the silicone face seal and the high-performance elastic band that wraps around your head. The mask is equipped with dual fans that operate at 3 speeds to purify the air delivered directly to your face as you breathe. Air is passed through a set of HEPA filter kits manufactured by Honeywell, and the filters are replaced every 30 days for optimal performance. Fans themselves run an impressive 7 hours on a full charge, providing enough usage to spend most of their day … and to sign the deal, the mask of even the sporty glowing LED lights ringing around every fan for that futuristic appeal.
Aside from being just a face mask, the XUPERMASK (pronounced Supermask, if you’re still wondering) also features a pair of wireless headphones. The headphones come out from the sides of the mask and can be placed on the mask itself on the indicated magnetic plates. When you want to wear them, just take off your headphones and put them in your ear. The headset comes with Bluetooth 5.0, seamlessly pairing with any smart device. They come with active noise reduction (quite impressive for a face mask), and even have an integrated noise-canceling microphone for things like answering calls or sending voice messages. There is no indication of where this microphone is located, but I would be completely impressed if it was in the mask housing itself. This would basically mean that you can talk while wearing the mask, not that your voice is muffled.
XUPERMASK currently comes in two colors – one in pure black and the other in white + orange combination. Just visually, it looks pretty impressive. LED rings, metal fan covers and those magnetic headphones set XUPERMASK apart. The mask even has a set of controls built into both sides, allowing you to switch fan speed, LED light, turn the ANC function on / off and do basic things like answering calls or playing music. From the top of my head, a fan-powered face mask with headphones sounds like a crazy idea that could easily work, and with XUPERMASK, Honeywell and Will.i.am are betting on a future where masks will continue to be common accessories for face outdoors … in that case, incorporating wireless headphones into your face mask sounds a little more reasonable. XUPERMASK is currently available in two sizes and at a retail price of $ 299. The mask is part of XUPERKIT (I guess the nomenclature was Will.i.am’s idea), which includes a purse, replaceable HEPA filters worth 3 months, a USB charging cable and replaceable headphone tips for different ear sizes. XUPERMASK has not yet received FDA approval, but has received approval for emergency use.
Designers: will.i.am and Jose I. Fernandez in partnership with Honeywell