Atmotube is the latest product that helps consumers avoid toxicity in everyday environments.

A new wave of affordable devices are putting electronic “noses” into consumers’ pockets, allowing them to sniff out particles in the air that may indicate invisible dangers.

Atmotube, a sleek metallic device with an Apple-like look and feel, is now accepting pre-orders for an estimated March 2016 launch. The $79 device measures carbon dioxide as well as “volatile organic compounds” such as formaldehyde and benzene, and condenses its data into an air quality score on a scale of 1 to 100.

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Atmotube

With consumers widely worried about environmental toxins, as we detailed in our New Natural report, Atmotube helps keep fears of invisible threats in check, measuring potential sources of toxicity that may include “paints and lacquers, paint strippers, cleaning supplies, household products such as varnishes and wax, cleaning and disinfecting products, building materials (plywood and particleboard) and furnishings,” according to the product’s Indiegogo page.

In addition to keeping consumers safe from dirty air, the company behind the device has a wider social mission. It’s partnering with the Asthma and Allergies Network to study the link between air quality and asthma, and also uploads air quality measurements to create real-time, hyper-local visualizations of air quality, which help inform citizens about pollution problems.

 

Tzoa, another crowdfunded device shipping in spring 2016, is a portable environmental monitor that tracks PM10 and PM2.5 particles in the air. These tiny pollutants are associated with a wide range of chronic health conditions, and are an especially familiar hazard for the residents of Asia’s smog-choked cities.

Similar devices are moving beyond air quality. The Nima by 6SensorLabs can detect traces of gluten in food, and the Scio measures a wide range of molecular compounds using a tiny spectrometer.

For more on portable environment sensors, check back soon for the Innovation Group’s Future 100 report.

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