Forbes reports that Lululemon, the fitness clothing brand, recently publicised its intention to buy tech start-up Mirror for half a billion dollars.

But it’s worth every dollar as this business’ high-tech mirror design is in fact a gem of a hidden home gym.


Here’s what it does and how it works.


More than a mirror

It calls itself the “nearly invisible interactive home gym” and, if you know it’s more than a mirror, it’s not hard to see why.

The innocent observer might miss that fact because “you can mount it to the wall or leave it resting against one, on its stand,” Forbes observes, and it acts as an ordinary mirror. As with humans, so with this amazing equipment – it’s what’s beneath the surface that makes it really special.

Under Mirror’s flawless, reflective surface, are some hidden gems:

• a 40-inch 1080p LCD sits under the mirrored surface,
• a 5MP camera also sits behind the top of the glass panel, and
• hardware that will connect to your upmarket Bluetooth speakers for fully immersive audio.

So, you can see what you’re doing while watching a gym instructor demonstrate to your favourite tracks in surround sound, and the instructor can see you, if you wish. Sorry, what?


Live, one-on-one classes, at your service

Yes, Mirror comes with an embedded gym instructor. The gym instructor, projected onto the Mirror surface, floats in space to put more visual focus on your workout. Or you can totally customise the display.

Personal live-trainer sessions start at $40 (ZAR 670) each. The instructor views you through the camera if it is enabled, and can correct your form, or encourage you when you need it most, in real-time. No dangerously misguided foot positions in your yoga asanas, and no more slacking off and ending the session, then. If you’re feeling too self-conscious but still want the instruction, or the room’s a mess you don’t want to disseminate, you can switch the camera off and continue with the audio-visual only.


But how?

Mirror works by connecting its bespoke smartphone app to the hardware mirror. You control the app, instead of touching Mirror itself.

Strap in the top-of-the-range Bluetooth heart rate sensor and you have a high-tech remote workout with no risk of contracting Covid-19 while you spray sweat everywhere. Oh, wait, you glow, right?
Every room, any workout

At 60cm tall, Mirror fits in just about any space. You can meditate, practise ballet routines, try a bootcamp, start boxing, or kickboxing.

“It’s a workout computer behind a mirrored front, one with Wi-Fi, a quad-core processor and built-in speakers.” Forbes gushes, and it’s yours for R700 a month over 36 months.


What others say

The feedback has been profound. Wall Street Journal says it’s a “total body workout machine that puts your treadmill to shame.” Time magazine calls it one of the best inventions of 2018, though to be accurate, it’s an innovation that connects existing technologies in a novel way. We’re sticking with Uncrate’s byline of “the holy grail of home gyms”.