Smart forks, air-purifying headphones and smell-enabled VR sets are the latest in Weird Tech

Smart forks, air-purifying headphones and smell-enabled VR sets are the latest in weird tech
As you’ve certainly noticed, some companies really do their best to innovate. Some of the most innovative products, however, are just plain weird when initially introduced. So this calls for a bit of fun. With this list, we’ll not only fulfill our promise of keeping you updated with the goings on in the world of tech, but we’ll also have this opportunity to showcase the weirdest tech that we saw in January.

Dyson Zone: headphones that purify sound and air

You know what sucks? Air pollution. That’s exactly what Dyson — British-based home appliances manufacturer — must’ve thought when drafting up the Dyson Zone. These are a pair of wireless headphones that can not only do active noise cancellation. They can do active pollution suppression!

That's right, the Dyson Zone headphones come with a contact-free visor — which is weird, because “visor” comes from “vision”, but the Dyson one goes over your mouth — which channels purified air directly into your thirsty nostrils.

Dyson claims that this contraption will be able to filter out 99% of particles that are 0.1 microns and larger. Naturally, the Dyson Zone — which still sounds like an episode from Goosebumps — needs filters to function, but those are said to last up to 12 months.

These were set to launch last year, but that didn’t happen. Dyson did, however, bring these to this year’s CES (Consumer Electronics Show) and promise to launch them in 2023, for the… noteworthy $949. And we don’t even know how many filters they come with out of the box.

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World’s first smart fork? Meet the HAPI fork!

Coming from HAPILABS — a manufacturer of health-oriented electronics based in Hong Kong — this is the Hapi fork and it wants to help you eat properly. No, really: most kids and adults don’t know anything about the process of eating. Turns out that things like eating too fast or not chewing enough can really disrupt the way your body works.

And that's what Hapi fork wants to help you fix! Every time you use this smart fork to gobble something up, it will remember that. If you start going at it too fast, it will utilize haptic feedback to let you know that it’s time to slow down.

It can also help you track and monitor your eating habits. This, naturally, happens via an app that you install on your smartphone, to which the smart fork can connect via Bluetooth. The purchase of a Hapi fork also comes with a guide on how to improve your eating too, which is a nice bonus.

But if you get a Hapi fork, what can you expect? Allegedly, some time after you’ve started using it, you can see a decrease in digestive problems like reflux. Hapilabs also have the data to prove that proper eating can even help you lose a bit of weight, which is always welcome. If you feel like this is your new favorite thing, the Hapi fork can be yours for just $79.

You know what VR needs? Smell.

OVR is a company that comes from Italy and their innovation revolves around scent. Is it me, or does this simply make sense, considering how Italian cuisine works? Anyway!

Meet the ION: a VR accessory which can supply your immersive visual experience with scent. Did you know that according to scientific research, scent is a major player when it comes to forming happy and detailed memories?

Well, thanks to the ION, you can create such magical moments even within a virtual environment. Utilizing this definition of a 4D technology, the device comes with a cartridge slot that you can insert Scentware into. And that word is impossibly Cyberpunk!

OVR isn't aiming to offer a platform to replicate the real world, though. As of now, their technology is aimed at allowing developers to create entirely new scents, based on the feelings that they’d like to evoke. The development of said scents happens with the OVR Scent Studio, which is a free smellcrafting tool.

When you have an ION set on, it connects to an app that lets users control the aroma that they are inhaling. Right now, the technology is still under development, but you can reach out to OVR and let them know if you’d like to be a tester, in case you are interested in smelling the summer breeze while playing Resident Evil 4 VR. At least, until someone develops and patents a Ganados scent.

Next level smart home tech: the type you pee on!

Okay, reality check: anything that can save you from a dedicated doctor’s appointment is a blessing. Those are a hassle to set up, require a ton of time and let’s not even get to the stress they induce. That’s why the U-scan is so groundbreaking, albeit if a bit weird.

Well, there’s no beating around the bush here: this thing scans your urine to provide you with a complete urinalysis. And yes, that’s a word from Withings’ marketing. This company is focused on health and wellbeing device manufacturing, and they are based in France.

But what can you do with a U-scan? Well, you can do number one on it and it will provide you with user-friendly data. From that data, you can get tips on how to lead a healthier life. For example, it can let you know if you are under hydrated or if you need more protein in your diet.

But the coolest aspect of this technology is that there is also a pro version for medical experts. If this thing can truly provide in-depth analysis, this can be a huge time-saver for doctors and laboratories around the world. The U-scan isn’t out yet, but you can sign up for a newsletter if you are interested in learning when it is.

Aaand for January’s cherry-on-top pick: Charmin Rollbot

Meet the Rollbot. This is a cute lil’ self-balancing bot and it has a very important place in society. Its job is to provide you with a fresh roll of toilet paper, in case you’ve run out. And that’s just adorable. It was unveiled at CES and Charmin — a toilet paper company — is actually considering making it a reality. If you agree that it's awesome and you feel like you want to see its funny polygonal bear snout at home, make sure to spread the word!

And that’s pretty much the most interesting tech that January brought! Cheers to a fun and even more eventful February. Given that MWC event at Barcelona is coming up, who is to say that we won't see more cool and odd tech revealed there? 

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