How Does Your Cell Phone Smell?

PushON | April 14th 2008

Customise a Welsh meadow smell to send with your image or video
Jim Neath @ Virtuaffinity was somewhat disappointed to learn that in Japan they have invented the way to send a fragrance from your cell phone. NTT Communications proclaims that fragrance is the next big thing in telecommunications. The New York Times review, When Roses Won’t Do, E-Mail a Fragrance, describes it, as follows:

“users will be able to select and send certain fragrance recipes to an in-home unit that is responsible for concocting and releasing the various fragrances. Each holds 16 cartridges of base fragrances or essences that are mixed to produce the various scents in a similar way that a printer mixes inks to produce other colors… The first step is to choose a scent from the multitude of fragrance recipes available through an I-mode site on a cell phone. Once chosen the instructions on how to make the scent are then transmitted to the fragrance device through infrared from the phone, and from there the scent is quickly mixed and emitted.”

You can make long-distance fragrance transmissions, even setting the date and time for scent emission. Moreover, you can customise scents and share them with other users through the fragrance “playlist” on the website.

The device is expected to cost around $200, and cartridge refills around $16.

Jim’s disappointment, however, had to do with the fact that he and his friend were toying with the idea of scented microphones. Now that the Japanese have burst out on the market with scented phones, Jim’s idea seems to have been used. However, there is still a chance that Jim’s idea may come to life, as Katrina Gallagher has been thinking of visiting Japan, and, being interested in all new techie stuff, she would surely bring such phone back with her. A few people in our company also play gigs, and for my part I love singing. If all these pieces of jigsaw come together, then PushON and Virtuaffinity may well produce the next big thing in entertainment: a live band using scented microphones to create an unforgettable fragrant performance. If this happens, Futuresonic may specially commission us for their next festival.

Hmm… Whatever we get to do with these phones, the venture certainly seems like a gateway to viral perfume marketing (Jean-Paul Gaultier could definitely use the potential of the Japanese invention). It can certainly add more fun to all Social Media and Social Networking platforms, blogs, and videocasts, not to mention the opportunities for Organic Marketing and SEO. On the image above you see a meadow in Llangunnor in Carmarthen. I still recall the freshness of the air there, but wouldn’t it be nice to make the memory slightly more tangible?

And, of course, this invention hides an enormous potential for live TV of the future. Imagine: you’re not just watching a video ad of McDonalds’ cheeseburger, you’re also smelling the food. Before long, the cinema will take on a totally new spin, and we’ll have scented remakes of the classical movies. “Scent of a Woman” sounds like the film to begin with.