The annual deluge of CES devices and gizmos normally tries to foretell what consumer-grade tech will seem like in dwelling rooms of the close to future. However after a yr like 2020, bendable TVs and surround-sound programs appear much less fascinating than a extra urgent class: tech to assist folks go outdoors throughout an ongoing pandemic.
That is why we’re taken by the Razer Project Hazel, arguably probably the most high-end face-mask idea we have seen since COVID-19 started ravaging the globe. This N95 masks idea was revealed as a part of Razer’s CES line of gamer-centric merchandise on Tuesday, and it confirmed up as a shock entry alongside the corporate’s standard fare of laptops and gaming peripherals.
16.8 million colours in your face? Certain, why not
Razer’s sales pitch alleges that this should not be stunning in any respect, for the reason that firm repurposed no less than certainly one of its manufacturing traces to pump out over one million disposable, surgical-grade face masks in 2020. From there, somebody on the firm determined to go one additional and make what appears like a fancypants, LED-smothered gamer mouse… in your face. Mission Hazel instantly reinforces the corporate’s affinity for customizable lighting grids, thanks to 2 rings of sunshine—which help 16.8 million colours, as a result of, why not—circling the masks’s air flow slots. We would not be shocked if Razer ultimately let players sync these gentle grids with close by mice and keyboards.
After laughing about that aesthetic overkill, nonetheless, we usually nodded in settlement with Mission Hazel’s idea. The system, as marketed, would come with an energetic air flow system, whose slots match right into a recharging case that doubles as an ultraviolet disinfectant. A silicon guard would seal on customers’ cheeks and nostril, whereas a voice-modulation system and a clear plastic face would go the additional mile to take care of speech quantity and visual mouths—belongings you completely will not discover in a standard-issue material masks. Razer goes even additional on guaranteeing your seen face by providing inside-facing lights as an choice.
For now, Razer will get to cover behind the “idea” label. With no dwell demo displaying off precisely the way it works—or any semblance of launch date, value, or battery life on a single cost—Razer’s idea might certainly be unachievable vaporware, or it could possibly be prohibitively costly upon launch. Plus, there’s the matter of fan-driven noise and battery-driven warmth, each of which must be distributed neatly to ensure the Mission Hazel gross sales pitch of comfortably leaving the masks on in public for lengthy spans of time.
As an open-eye masks, Mission Hazel is definitely much less dramatic in building than the likes of the Narwall Mask, an $85 choice at present on the market that lacks energetic air flow programs (or clear face plate) and as an alternative depends on a SCUBA-like, all-over design. (From a cursory look, it appears like an incredible cosplay choice for Snorks followers.) And as of press time, the very best masks choice we have discovered with clear mouth home windows, as a part of our complete mask-buying information, is trickier to suggest because of CDC pointers.
Even when Razer’s prototype by no means emerges as a full-blown product, we will not think about the remainder of the worldwide tech sector shifting ahead with extra concepts for easy methods to safely navigate the skin world—nicely earlier than COVID-19 vaccination turns into a social given. Ought to Razer ship us any updates about Mission Hazel changing into a retail product, we’ll hold you posted.
Itemizing picture by Razer