Dyson has unveiled a tap which can dry your hands.

The device combines a patented high-speed drier with hot and cold faucets.

The Airblade Tap is the company's latest innovation in bathroom hygiene. The original Airblade hand drier was launched in 2006 and has been installed in 250,000 locations.

But the tap comes at the premium price of £1,000 - or the same cost as about 500 budget hand towels - leading some to question whether it will be a mass-market hit.

The tap was leaked in December by New Scientist, who noted a patent was filed in the US that claimed the idea as a novelty.

It works by placing a motor, air filter and sound-silencers below the tap, and a stainless steel head from which air is expelled at 430 miles per hour.

Water is pumped through the same faucet, making it different to existing hand washer-driers which usually contain two seperate outlets for water and air.


Above: the Dyson Airblade Tap is said to save energy, water and money over traditional hand driers

Sir James Dyson told the BBC in an interview that the "secret" ingredient in the machine was a electromagnetic motor, which took 100 engineers seven years and almost £30 million to develop.

The motor can accelerate to 100,000 revolutions per minute in less than a second, and hands 6,000 adjustments a second to maintain efficiency.

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Dyson told the BBC that the device was protected by 110 patents, and that another 100 were pending.

They claim that the machine cuts energy use, and despite its high price is able to save users money over the long run.

But other analysts said they were sceptical anyone but the very rich would be willing to install the machines at their current premium price point.

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