Communications in the time of coronavirus.
Japanese company Donut Robotics has created a “smart mask” that connects to smartphones–delivering your voice through the phone– and is able to offer translation between Japanese, Chinese, Korean, Vietnamese, Indonesian, English, Spanish and French.
It is able to perform several other functions, including voice-to-text dictation and voice amplification. Rather than being a full face mask that protects against airborne particles and droplets, the mask is designed to fit over top of another face mask.
The first wave of the masks is being distributed in Japan by December, and will retail from $40 to $50 USD. Unfortunately for the rest of us, they will not be available globally until April 2021 at the earliest.