Hushme – World First Mask for your Voice?

For those of you old enough to remember the TV show ‘Get Smart’, then you probably remember the cone of silence, a large clear dome that would come down over two secret agents having a conversation to protect the privacy of what was being said. That was the first thing I thought of when I saw Hushme, I thought to myself they did it, an actual physical object that can let you speak privately and quietly anywhere you want without fear of sensitive information being overheard. Then I thought about how nice it would be to have one for my wife for a different purpose…but I digress. You see, Hushme, is one of those products we have all thought about inventing until someone did but is it worth it?

After witnessing an unintentional eavesdrop on a Skype call in a cafe, one of the Hushme founders decided to create a mask to be able to talk privately without bothering people nearby. After a successful Kickstarter campaign, tweaks to prototypes, some interest at CES and not to mention the many media outlets that first covered the device the final version of Hushme you see today was born.

With its unique ergonomic design that couples as both a Voice mask and Headset, the device essentially is a headphone and microphone combination that is shaped to fit directly over the mouth and connect to your device through a wired or wireless connection. In Headset Mode you can put it around the neck as a hands-free headset while speaking on a phone or listening to music. In Mask Mode, Hushme is locked over the mouth. It seamlessly integrates with your phone, keeping your conversations private.

It should be noted that the device does not completely block transmission of sound, but rather dampens it down to the 25-30 decibel range which is the equivalent of a very quiet conversation. Hushme’s special algorithm modulates sound relative to the intensity of your voice and consequently raises or lowers the volume or pauses completely following your voice. So, who exactly might benefit from a device like this you may ask? We can see its application in mid to large Office settings where sensitive personal information and private data are shared verbally or in response to inquiries over the phone and with the increasing threat of cybersecurity, this may not be as crazy as it seems. Even at home, trying to Zoom with a newborn sleeping, why not right?

Now, things get a little strange when we throw in Hushme’s app, the ability to mask your voice with different downloadable sounds you can output for others to hear instead. Sounds of wind, ocean, rain, etc. just seem like a weird feature for such a device to have. We also must mention that in our testing, we did receive many strange looks when using the device in a public setting with one person remarking that it reminded them of the device, they used to silence Loki in the Avengers film and we must agree.

To conclude, there is nothing wrong with being an early adopter of new technology and paving the way for others to see how great a device is. Does it work well? Yes. Does it look kind of goofy? A little. However, one thing remains true. There is no better way to protect your conversation from curious ears in a public space than this. We will let you decide if it is worth the investment.

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