Japanese Startup Creates Face Mask Attachment With Transcribing And Translating Functions

Japanese Startup Creates 'Connected' Face Mask for Coronavirus New Normal | Japan's startup company created robotic face mask to convert user voice into text message

Those wearing the mask can send messages, make calls, and speak more loudly. Now, Japanese startup Donut Robotics recently developed a smart mask with an active internet-connected that can transmit a message and translate Japanese into eight languages. The company has named this special mask as c-mask which will be connected to the Bluetooth of the smartphone and will operate through a mobile app.

Donut robotics engineers came up with the idea of making masks because they were looking for a product that could help the company survive the epidemic.

At the same time, the coronavirus had begun to spread, Donut Robotics secured a contract to supply robot guides and translators to Tokyo's Haneda Airport. These texts are then sent through the user's smartphone.

Donut Robotics aims to sell 5,000 thousand C-masks in Japan in September. The startup plans to sell these masks in China, Europe and the United States as well. This mask can also make a phone call upon giving voice commands.

"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", said Taisuke Ono, the principle executive of Donut Robotics. Further, Ono Pharmaceuticals, one of the oldest Japanese companies is set to sell c-masks in China, US and Europe.

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The device will soon be available for pre-order in Japan at $40 (Rs 3,052 approx) with the company planning to ship the masks later this year. For this, they adopted the translation software which mapped the facial muscles and converted them into speech.

Japanese startup Donut Robotics' CEO Taisuke Ono shows the c-mask and its mobile phone application. It took the firm just one month to develop a prototype mask and the design was created by Donut Robotics engineer Shunsuke Fujibayashi.

It's now aiming to generate revenue through its subscribe based services through its apps.

Ono raised 28 million yen ($260,000) for development by selling Donut Robotics shares through Japanese crowdfunding site Fundinno.

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