Honeywell, Rapper will.i.am Partner on New High-Tech Mask

Honeywell is teaming with the rapper and entrepreneur will.i.am to produce a nearly $300 multitechnology face mask.
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Honeywell  (HON) - Get Report said Tuesday it was teaming with the rapper and entrepreneur will.i.am to produce a nearly $300 multitechnology face mask.

The Xupermask, which is set to launch Thursday, includes silicone face seal; an elastic strap; dual three-speed fans; high-efficiency particulate air, or HEPA filtration, and replaceable filters that users swap out every 30 days.

The mask also features active noise-canceling audio and microphone capabilities, Bluetooth connectivity, LED lights, and a magnetic earbud docking system. 

The company says the face mask has not been cleared by the Food and Drug Administration. 

It has received the agency's emergency-use authorization "for use as source control by the general public as well as by [health-care providers] in health-care settings [to] help prevent the spread of infection or illness during the COVID-19 pandemic."

Honeywell is the Charlotte provider of technologies for application in aerospace, buildings and performance materials. Will.i.am is the founder of the musical group the Black Eyed Peas.

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The Xupermask can worn be year round anywhere in the world, Honeywell said.

Powered by a seven-hour battery, the mask has an external charging port and can be worn while being charged. 

The Xupermask will sell for $299 in two sizes, small/medium and medium/large. Replaceable filters for the Xupermask will be available in a three-pack for $27.99.

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Will.i.am said in a statement that the Xupermask "is an uncompromising face mask design with high-tech performance for the modern lifestyle."

He said in a Q&A on the Honeywell website that "when masks first became a must, there was a shortage situation, so people started making their own. Rather than looking "medical," regular people wanted to keep safe and also try to look a bit styling, a nod to being fashionable and functional."

He told USA Today that he'd planned to make a couple hundred Xupermasks for his close friends before connecting with Honeywell to produce them more broadly. 

Will.i.am can be seen wearing one of the masks in the Black Eyed Peas video "Girl Like Me" featuring Shakira.

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In January, Honeywell beat Wall Street's fourth-quarter earnings expectations amid double-digit growth in warehouse automation and PPE products and services sales.

Wearing masks became a political issue during the COVID-19 pandemic with many people, including former President Donald Trump, refusing to wear them.

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