A French business will this year begin selling a scarf that doubles as an air filter for cyclists and pedestrians who are concerned about pollution and also includes an air quality monitor that connects to a smartphone app.
The product, called Wair, is among thousands of new products and concepts from fledgling businesses and tech start-ups alike that will be featured at this week’s CES 2017 in Las Vegas.
As well as a unisex scarf (currently offered at €87.50), initial wearable tech products from Wair for which pre-orders are being taken on its website include a snood aimed at women (also €87.50) and a men’s neck collar (€54.17).
Besides the initial cost of the scarf, which comes with two filters, purchasers will need to factor in the expense of replacement filters, which Wair says need to be changed between every two and four weeks and which cost from €8 to €10 on its website.
Wair founder Caroline Van Rentergherm first showcased the product at Paris Fashion Tech week in September 2015, and it has already won her a Cisco young entrepreneurs’ prize.
Ahead of CES 2017, she told Chris Foxx of BBC News: “Wair is the first anti-pollution connected scarf.
“It means it’s a fashion accessory, an efficient filtration system, and a prevention app against air pollution.”
Asked why people would by the product when cheaper, disposable face masks are available, she answer: “Style is important so I thought creating a protection that is not also scary looking would help encourage people to wear it.”
Simon has been news editor at road.cc since 2009, reporting on 10 editions and counting of pro cycling’s biggest races such as the Tour de France, stories on issues including infrastructure and campaigning, and interviewing some of the biggest names in cycling. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, his background has proved invaluable in reporting on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, and the bike industry. He splits his time between London and Cambridge, and loves taking his miniature schnauzer Elodie on adventures in the basket of her Elephant Bike.