Remember Google Nose ? No, we don’t either, because it was just an April Fool’s joke. But, naturally, a Japanese company has taken the idea way too seriously, and is set to release a bizarre new plug-in device for your smartphone.
The latest development in mobile technology isn’t about jacking up the resolution, or increasing portability. It’s all about making the virtual even more tangible through the use of one very important sense.
ChatPerf aims to bring an olfactory experience to your mobile gaming and socializing. Customizing ringtones and wallpaper is so last year – instead how about a specially selected smell drifting from your mobile phone to alert you to a text from your best friend? Or perhaps sending the sweet scent of roses along with a romantic message to your love?
It could also be used when gaming for a more immersive experience, for example the whiff of gunpowder when playing a shooting game or even a quick blast of fruit for classics like Pac-Man when gobbling up those bonus items? The clever new device could make games more immersive than ever. The possibilities are endless, depending on the kind of app you’re using. Just imagine – Plants vs. Zombies pumping out the smell of stinking zombie flesh…
The company behind this revolutionary development in scented apps has explained a little of their business model, which involves selling a range of scent ‘tanks’ for users to collect. They also plan to also release their own SNS and app content when the device goes on sale. The software development kit to link an app with the scent emitter has already been made public, so companies and individual app developers can contribute their own scent-compatible apps.
The device shown below is a prototype, designed to dock with the ever-popular iPhone 4S, and this September the company will release one that plugs directly into the earphone jack. They’re also looking at releasing an Android-compatible version in the future, so no need to start thumping out an angry post on Twitter just yet, guys!
So we’ve got touch-phones and now smell-phones. Next up, taste-phones anyone?