A Harvard University researcher and his team has created an 'oChip' that can send thousands of unique fragrances via phone calls, text or social media.
The chip has been put in a phone called oPhone. It is the brainchild of Harvard Professor David Edwards and two of his design students, Rachel Field and Amy Yin, who have established Vapor Communications operating out of Le Laboratorie (Le Lab) in Paris to bring the device to market.
David Edwards also teamed up with French designers Baptiste Viala and Laurent Mion to produce a working prototype which was displayed at the arts and design center Le Laboratoire in Paris recently.
Edwards believes oPhone can send complex odors to people and may even help Alzheimer's patients recover old memories.
The scents can be shared via smartphone attachments and Bluetooth devices to other oPhones across the country, states or ocean.
So how does the oPhone work? It all begins with the reproduction of particular scents such as coffee or citrus flavors, and then by arranging molecules of these flavors in a certain order and at different ratios. The result creates aromatic profiles.
“Scents are deconstructed by an aroma expert. The specific aroma profiles are captured and loaded into an 'oChip',” explained David Edwards, a biomedical engineering professor at Harvard. "Each 'oChip' can release thousands of unique odors for 20 to 30 seconds," he added.
"We create unique aromatic profiles," says Blake Armstrong, director of business communications at Vapor Communications, an organization operating out of Le Laboratorie (Le Lab) in Paris. "We put that into the oChip that faithfully renders that smell."
Armstrong added that they are already working on improving the scent-transmitting phone for the end-of-year Beta release. They want feedback before a major release in 2015. The oPhone will eventually be smaller, "more intimate," according to Armstrong.
Recently, researchers also developed KissMs app that sends virtual kisses and bouquets to their loved ones. The app was released on Valentines Day and is available for users on Android and iOS app stores. Users can send a variety of ‘Kimojis’ (kiss emoji) with a choice of hugs, bouquets, punches, rings and send it along with a 10-second long voice message.