Razer’s widespread $100 Zephyr mask isn’t a alternative for PPE (as a result of it isn’t PPE), however its announcement of the Zephyr Professional final week spurred a surge of claims that the corporate had overstated the masks’ safety. Razer responded by scrubbing each occasion of “N95-grade” from the mask’s product web page late final week (through PC Mag).
Beforehand, Razer used N95 in a number of locations to explain the filtration and efficacy of its replaceable filters, which had been known as “N95-grade” due to their 99 p.c bacterial filtration effectivity (BFE). Razer now refers to them as “air purification filters.” Whereas Razer claims that testing confirmed its filters meet a 95 p.c particulate filtration effectivity (PFE), all the mask (not simply the filters) must block 95 p.c of small particles and be cleared by regulators to name itself an N95.
Razer declined to offer an on-the-record assertion in response to questions from The Verge. However in a tweet thread on Saturday, the corporate tweeted that “The Razer Zephyr and Zephyr Professional aren’t medical units, respirators, surgical masks, or private protecting gear (PPE) and aren’t meant for use in medical or scientific settings.”
*The Razer Zephyr and Zephyr Professional aren’t medical units, respirators, surgical masks, or private protecting gear (PPE) and aren’t meant for use in medical or scientific settings.
— R Λ Z Ξ R (@Razer) January 8, 2022
This isn’t the primary little bit of controversial data that Razer has modified on the Zephyr’s web page. On December tenth, 2021 (through Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine), it revealed a brand new model of the web page that eliminated its declare within the FAQ part that likened the Zephyr to a medical machine, respirator, surgical mask, and PPE, which initially stated the Zephyr “provides the identical performance and satisfactory safety attributable to its 99% BFE ranking.” It now says “Razer Zephyr isn’t a medical machine, respirator, surgical mask or private protecting gear (PPE) and isn’t meant for use on medical or scientific settings.”
On Saturday, January eighth, Razer published a blog to its web site known as “The Science Behind Razer Zephyr” that gives the outcomes of each check that the corporate put the Zephyr via (related or to not the subject of filtration) earlier than coming to market. It issued an replace (with none point out of what modified) to this submit right now, January tenth, that integrated bits from the assertion above, together with explicitly stating that the Zephyr and Zephyr Professional are “not licensed N95 masks,” together with eradicating each point out of “N95” that was discovered within the unique weblog submit revealed Saturday.
Razer refers to those filters as “air purification filters” as a substitute of being “N95-grade.”
The takeaway from the check outcomes that the weblog discloses is that, whereas Razer did put the Zephyr via a number of inside checks, it nonetheless wants exterior evaluate from knowledgeable companies earlier than individuals can really feel assured that it’s gone via a rigorous analysis. That extends to the Zephyr Professional, a model of the mask that provides voice amplification that’s set to come back out someday in 2022, as properly.
When the Zephyr was initially introduced at CES 2021 as Mission Hazel, we famous that it lacked “any of the mandatory approvals and certifications from the Meals and Drug Administration, the Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention, or Occupational Security and Well being Administration.”
When Razer launched Zephyr in late October 2021, it nonetheless hadn’t gotten ample testing to be thought of PPE, and we observed that the corporate referred to it as an “air air purifier” in its advertising (whereas nonetheless touting N95-grade filters). Shortly afterward, my colleague Nicole Wetsman and I interviewed Razer’s Jeff Sandoval at our On The Verge occasion, and Nicole pressed him on the Zephyr’s lack of clearances from companies just like the FDA and NIOSH (on the 9:04 mark).