“Mirror, mirror on the wall, who’s the neatest-shaved of them all?” Well, it seems we may soon have an answer for that question now as Max Braun, an engineer for Google, has created his on Android-powered smart mirror which he installed about his bathroom sink.
According to Braun description, “There doesn’t seem to be anyone selling the product I was looking for.”
Owing to this daunting challenge, the need was sparked off to personally build his own using off-the-shelf components. The principal components which comes as requirement for his smart mirror include a two-way mirror, a 15.6-inch ASUS MB MB168B+ USB display, a controller board (complete with HDMI and VGA outputs), and an Amazon Fire TV Stick (among other various odds and ends).
The whole engrossing technological wonder begins with the Fire TV Stick, which is operating an Android SDK — the major function for this being firing up the UI (Braun previously tested the Chromecast and Nexus Player before settling on the Fire TV Stick). Max Braun designed a few custom Android APIs to deliver on relevant information at a glance which includes the time/date, weather forecast as well as news headlines from the Associated Press.
This mirror particularly will not have the functionality of being manipulated the as you could easily manipulate a tablet or even a tablet, what this means is that you will not be able to touch and swipe at it ( you want to do that to a mirror in the first place?) — on the other hand, it exploits voice commands adopting Google Now to display pertinent information.
“Other concepts I’m playing with are traffic, reminders, and essentially anything that has a Google Now card,” Braun opines. “The idea is that you don’t need to interact with this UI.”
Worth reminding here is that this technology is quite a distance from the first Android-powered smart mirror that we’ve come across over the years, yet it is fair to say it is one of the glossiest as well as most well-integrated ones around.