The Next Phase of Smart Mirrors

Two years have passed since n-tech Research’s previous report on smart mirrors the technologies that enable them. We seem to be on track with most of what we had predicted:

It is more evident today that imbuing the humble mirror with additional smart functionalities is increasingly a conversation about what types of electronics can be embedded within it, often in concert: cameras, displays, lights, touch and gesture recognition, and various types of sensors.

The use of self-dimming coatings for automotive mirrors remains important, but other kinds of smart coatings –self cleaning and self-healing have yet to really prove their worth in the mirrors business.

Meanwhile, smart mirrors are pushing further into the spotlight. In automotive, the core safety function of a reflective mirror (both internal and external) is being forced to accommodate higher-tech capabilities such as cameras and displays, which is changing the game for suppliers.

We also are seeing a recent wave of activity in smart mirrors in retail and consumer environments, with some very large brand names now implementing pilot programs. Alongside them are some equally major technology giants — including one that’s attempting to mesh the worlds of e-commerce and retail.

The question remains as to whether the smart mirror has crossed a threshold, where functionality and electronics are in the spotlight, arguably more than the mirror itself.

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