A scent-creating device is thought to be the smallest of its kind and compatible with existing VR headsets.
VThe Japanese startup Vaqso has secured funding to invest in the mass production of its VR headset add-on device Vaqso VR, which creates scents for headset wearers relevant to what they are seeing. The funding from Weru Investment totalling USD 600,000 will help the product reach the wider, global consumer market.
The compact wireless device shoots out relevant smells based on the VR contents, amplifying the gaming experience and making it even more realistic – smells created during the demo phase included fried chicken and gunpowder smoke. The small device is as thin and small as a Snickers® chocolate bar, approximately 12cm long and 3cm thick, and weighs just 50g. Its battery power lasts for two hours, and is chargeable using a micro USB cable. The scent-fuelling device is compatible to be mounted on to various type of VR headsets, and with odours lasting one month at present. The device will also allow users to regulate smell intensity according to their location within the VR environment. The add-on is expected to hit the mass market in 2018.
Virtual reality has become so popular in the past three years that it has entered the mainstream market for both consumers and businesses. The function has helped in the medical sector, allowing those with Alzheimer’s to help fuel research by playing a connected game, and VR has even assisted travellers plan their next getaway with virtual tours of prospective holiday destinations. How could multi-sensory virtual reality be used by brands to influence purchasing behaviour?