Imagine doing a breath test that could tell you if you had COVID in five seconds. The technology exists – it’s called Freedom by ViraWarn and we saw it at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.
The device requires the user to exhale once and within seconds it can tell you if you have COVID or the flu or if you’re perfectly healthy.
Freedom is small enough to fit in your hand but it’s actually a shrunken down version of the company’s larger detectors called Liberty that have been deployed in high-end hotels that can tell at a glance that the room is COVID free.
So how does it work?
ViraWarn has patented and proprietary technology called Charge Transference.
The sensors onboard can detect the spike proteins on the outer shell of the COVID particle when they drift through the engineered media.
This causes unique polarized signatures which are detected by ViraWarn’s advanced biosensors.
These are sent to the device’s processor to screen out false positives using specialized algorithms.
The result is then displayed on the device with a red LED indicating COVID, amber LED for the flu and green means you’re all clear.
And on top of its remarkable accuracy, Freedom can also detect all the variants of COVID, current and future.
Inside the unit is a cartridge that will last for 300 tests before it needs replacing.
Company chairman and co-founder Conrad Bessemer says COVID enters our body through our nose and mouth and can take up to 14 days to infect us when it settles in our nasal passages and throats.
The Freedom device can detect that presence when it’s in our body whereas a PCR test can only detect COVID when it’s taken up residence up our noses and in our throats.
Bessemer says the device is also called Freedom for a reason.
“High- risk individuals will finally be able to regain their freedom again…the freedom to visit their loved ones…the freedom to breathe worry-free indoors again…the freedom to live life like they used to before the pandemic,” Bessemer says.
“And that is what the true benefit the Liberty by ViraWarn will bring – a return to normalcy.”
And Freedom is set to get even smaller.
ViraWarn is planning on releasing a version of Freedom that can fit in your pocket, a bag or your glove box that will be about the size of an e-cigarette or a personal breathalyser.
* Stephen Fenech travelled to Las Vegas with support from LG, Samsung and Hisense.