Initially launched in Korea, the portable air quality detector Air Cube was showcased at Mobile World Congress Shanghai 2015 and will be on sale in China later this year.

The pocket-sized Air Cube was first introduced in Korea early this year as a portable real-time air-monitoring device and used to alert consumers to take preventative measures when experiencing poor air quality via a smartphone app wherever they go. The exhibitor claimed that the most popular occasions for Air Cube usage are indoor locations including home, office, public transportation and cars.

Detect and Prevent

As discussed in Mintel’s 2015 consumer trend ‘Pollution Protection’ the threat of pollution to human, rather than environmental, health is driving technological innovation and clean, protective product launches. Indeed according to Mintel’s Trends in Health and Wellness China 2014 report, about half of Chinese consumers mentioned environmental pollution as one of their top concerns.

Governments and brands have developed new ways to monitor and reduce air pollution, both indoors and outdoors. IAQSense is an EU-funded project that aims to develop a sensor system that will monitor indoor air pollution via a mobile phone app and a giant billboard created out of pollutant-absorbing materials and featuring a new Simon Armitage poem has been erected in Sheffield, UK.

Some brands have also tapped into tackling the after-effects of air pollution on a consumer level. For example, in London Iluxe Organics has opened a new pop-up hair salon that offers a detox hair treatment and blow dry to deep cleanse polluted hair.

Innovations such as Air Cube help consumers raise awareness about air pollution and offer timely alerts in order to avoid health risks. Prevention sometimes is not quite enough for today’s worrisome consumers. It is a good opportunity for brands to offer products and services with detoxing and cleansing functions in order to free consumers from pollution.

Based in Shanghai, Philix Liu is Mintel’s Trends Analyst for the APAC region. He publishes innovations, creative marketing campaigns, new designs and other trends related content happening currently. He also helps inspire brands and agencies onsite to innovate in the APAC region. Before joining Mintel, Philix held a strategic planner role at an advertising agency in Shanghai and a qualitative research role at TNS in Beijing.