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Chat Perf attachment adds smell-o-vision to your iPhone

May 21, 2013 | Telepresence Options

NEMA South Korea


Story and Images by Jarrett Bellini / CNN

We just can't leave well-enough alone.

In 1960, the movie�"Scent of Mystery"�opened in theaters, marking the first and only official attempt at Smell-O-Vision, in which strategic odors were emitted during the film from little pipes near the seats.

At the time, it was big thinking and an interesting draw for moviegoers, sort of like the collective asthma attack everyone developed a few years ago for modern 3-D. Which I think most of us will now agree is more trouble than it's worth.

Like wearing pants.

Before Smell-O-Vision, other motion pictures had unsuccessfully tried to use aromas in disjointed and haphazard ways. But in "Scent of Mystery," new, specific patented technology was developed to actually drive the plot. And that hadn't been done before.

Fortunately, the storyline had nothing to do with Peter Lorre getting sick from bad oysters. Though the reviews might've been interesting.

"I liked it up until the 30-minute bathroom scene. Two stars."

"Scent of Mystery" was eventually de-odorized and retitled "Holiday in Spain," at which point Smell-O-Vision was neatly tucked away in the vault of American bad ideas.

It now shares that space with game footage from the XFL.

But more than 60 years later, a startup company in Japan is bringing back the Smell-O-Vision concept for a smaller screen. Specifically, the one on your phone.

Sexting just got way more interesting.

They call this thing�ChatPerf, and it's a thumb-drive-sized atomizer that plugs into your mobile device so it can be triggered to release specific odors on command. However, the major design limitation is that it can release only one specific fragrance from whatever scent tank you happen to have inserted into the atomizer.

So God help you if you suddenly want to smell "Summer Flowers" but accidentally left the house with "Larry the Cable Guy Doing Situps."

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