Smell phones worth every scent

Guess what some people are making at the ol' factory in Scotland? Let's just say, technology never smelled so nice.

Everyone has heard of cell phones, but what about smell phones?

A company in Scotland has plans to give the "smell you later" conversation capper (remember that from third grade?) some literal value. Inverness-based Electronic Aromas is developing technology to allow cell phone users to send scents back and forth.

Wireless with a whiff of whimsy.

The actual smells don't waft from one phone to the other. A special card in the recipient's cell phone whips up the whiff.

The man behind the company is George Dodd, a perfumer who started the Olfaction Research Group at England's Warwick University. He has developed a way to pack powerful scent molecules into a small area. As a result, a single SIM card-sized cartridge can mimic several dozen smells.

So what's the stinking point of all this?

The intention is for call recipients to know who is calling with a single sniff -- like Caller ID for the nose. Picture the aromatic phone ringing and you saying to your spouse, "Margaret, I smell allspice. Must be your mom."

Dodd sees other applications as well.

"In Japan, where the new 3G [third-generation] phones are now in use, people will happily pay 25p [about 40 cents] to have their daily horoscope sent to them," Dodd told the Glasgow Herald. "We can extend that concept to have their daily perfume sent to them."

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