Orwellian "smart mirror" tells you how to fix your face
Mirror, mirror, show my reflection; and tell me how to fix my complexion. That's the premise behind HiMirror's HiMirror Classic: a smart-mirror with built-in camera designed to help beauty professionals hawk beauty products to credulous, self-conscious punters. But with the new HiMirror Mini Premium, the company's cutting out the go-between so now agoraphobes worried about their looks won't even need to leave the house.
"As the CEO of a well-known Taiwanese electronics group, I am constantly juggling projects and flying around the world," HiMirror inventor Simon Shen writes on the product website. "My wife, sometimes asks me how people in the high-tech industry can be so busy and what takes up all our time. I really wanted to share my world with her, so I set out to create something that she could relate to, something that would make her go wow!" – that's the life-affirming story of how SmartMirror was born as a piece of technology even Mrs. Shen can relate to.
The HiMirror Mini packs a camera into a touchscreen display to show you an image of your face. Why not a simple mirror, you ask? Where are the smarts in that? You see, behind the scenes, the Mini packs what the company somewhat ominously calls Skin Analysis Engine X (ver 4.0). This can examine your face in search of no fewer than 10 defects: wrinkles, fine lines, dark circles, dark spots, red spots, roughness, pores, complexion issues, hydration and pigmentation.
Fret not. Once the HiMirror Mini Premium is done making you feel bad about yourself, it can tell you the very products you need to fix your broken visage. In a chilling section of the user interface dubbed My Beauty Box, one can see recommendations based on skin condition (and the weather), find and "manage" products, and see a record of what you've used in the past. Best of all, the Mini tracks the changes to your appearance over time so you can see the direct benefits that spending money brings to making you a more beautiful person.
The Mini also has some features to help apply said remediation measures. It can create five different lighting "scenarios" for applying makeup, and magnify areas of your face two or three times.
And like any self-respecting smart device (albeit one for people with potential self-respect issues of their own), it can show your Google Calendar and connect to Facebook, Instagram and Spotify. It also has built-in alarm settings so you can stare into this Orwellian void just when you're looking your absolute best.
We've asked HiMirror whether there's any scientific basis for its skin analysis and product recommendations, and also how products become listed but have had no response. What's the betting beauty companies pay to be listed, plus commission to HiMirror on each sale?
The first HiMirror Mini Premiums are estimated to ship on November 5 and are available to pre-order for €259 (US$300). Here's hoping Mrs. Shen is suitably excited.