At the turn of the last century Annika Winell, a ‘reading glasses-user’, started to think about if there was any better help than traditional concave mirrors and makeupglasses – in order to see sharply at short distance in a mirror. Such concave mirrors gave a magnified and blurry image and the sharpness was too far away for the needs of a presbyopian has (a person after 45 years of age who uses reading glasses).
And to pluck the eyebrowes was impossible!
With her glasses on she couldn’t either see or reach the hairs and with no glasses she couldn’t see clear or sharp….this problem must be solved! And how easily the contact lenses then could be to put in…
A person in need is the mother of inventions, we have been told and so it turned out to be. As a daughter of an inventor (her father) with almost one hundred patents, Annika started to test and develop, with obstinacy and persistency and many different prototypes, in order to have the right look and feel of the product and to experience the visual aquity as wanted, also on a handy distance from the mirror and without any glasses on.
In autumn 2004 the company AWUM AB was founded. The trade mark SPEGELZOOM® by awum was registered all over EU and the graphical profile was decided.
Women of adequate ages and most of them long-sighted gave their testimonials and had the opportunity to test prototypes – a very, very good mirror with an exceptionell sharpness!
Some different lenses of glass was purchased – the first one, from a manufacturer in Holland, were as much as SEK1800 (~€190) and was extremely clear, but too expensive. Now the matter was to find and manufacture polished glass lenses to acceptable prices.The problemes turned out to be even more – the method for attachment to a mirror was not easy to solve. Suction cups were NOT an optimal method! The solution suddenly appeared, when Annika visited a manufacturer in Stockholm and saw the suction cups, used when lifting heavy things as e.g.cars.There the idea came – so we can make it work! New manufacturers were contacted and new prototypes were made.
Even more challenges were waiting – to glue the rubber mould to the glass and get 100% air tight for vacuum appeared to be a difficult problem to solve. Many exercises at the glue factory and a industrial robot found the method – now our secret recipe.Then we had to make a shiny ring of stainless steel, lasermarked with our logotype – that took 6 months to find out how.
A brand new product now was growing, every day working for all long-sighted people, a product for all mirrors and for the rest of everyones lives. Spegelzoom® lasts and functions on every mirror, even when your vision changes over the years.
Since September 2006 the product is represented in an exhibition – ‘Inventions of women’ at the National museum of Science and Technology in Stockholm. End first part of the story of the SPEGELZOOM® by awum, with the first model, called Original.
Since 2008 there are two new models –SPEGEL No1 & SPEGEL No 2 – which both are grinded and polished glass mirrors, not only a transparent lens! They are doublesided mirrors – magnifying from convex side and an ordinary mirror in flat side (IN ONE GLASS PIECE!) Now even better to fasten to the bathroom wall mirror as a designed smart and magnifying complement …this is a stylish, minimalistic and uniquely Swedish designed product.
Annika Winell has been nominated to the The Swedish Inventors’ Association award:
‘The Swedish woman inventor of the year’ – in both 2007, 2008 and 2009, once for each model.
At the EUWIIN innovation conference in Helsinki 7-8 October 2009 Annika Winell was awarded ‘A Special Recognition Award’ among 27 Finalists competing for first place –‘The EU Women Innovator of the Year’
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