Dyson AirBlade Tap Hand Dryer: Throwing in the towel

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Dyson invited us out to South Kensington yesterday to show off the latest results of their mad tinkering. In an era of increasingly homogenised technology it’s always comforting to be in the presence of some old fashioned engineering geniuses who make things that look how gadgets are supposed to look. The star of the show was the Dyson Airblade Tap hand dryer but there were also tweaks to the existing Airblade models that you know and have complicated relationship with.

The Dyson Airblade Tap hand dryer washes and dries hands with no need to leave the sink so no more hands dripping water across floor. Or queues to use the dryer. The sleek design looks like something robots would use to hose down and is made from 304 stainless steel – an anti-corrosion steel used for the construction of boats. It’s not just shiny, but pretty tough too and can withstand pressure that would make a conventional tap explode.

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As with all modern taps and dryers, infrared sensors are used to pinpoint hand positions and release water from the tap stem. Once hands are wet and drying is requested, integrated circuitry computes the information and activates two high velocity sheets of air on the tap’s branches. Unheated clean air is released to scrape water off hands in a process Dyson claims only takes 12 seconds. Having used the regular Airblade I’m a little sceptical although I do on balance find them faster than regular dryers.

Speaking of which the Dyson Airblade V hand dryer is now 60% smaller yet just as fast. Two sheets of high velocity air angled at 115 degrees span the width of each hand, and scrape off water in just 10 seconds. I don’t see this unit installed as much as the Dyson Airblade which is now a little lighter having lost 1.1kg of materials. It is also now HACCP approved for hygiene, so it is safe for use in the food and beverage industry.

Dyson Airblade Tap hand dryer: £999.99 All models
Dyson Airblade V hand dryer: £499.99 PC white/£519.99 Nickel
Dyson Airblade mk2 hand dryer: £649.99 PC ABS/ £799.99 Aluminium
Wiping on the back of your jeans: £000.00 Levis/Wranglers