Skip to main content

The oCase is the smartphone cover that allows you to receive messages with scents

ocase news availibility ophone w ipad large
oPhone Image used with permission by copyright holder
Just the other day, my son was asking me if you could send a smell to another person. We won’t get into what type of smell he was talking about, but I told him no. It doesn’t happen often, but I was dead wrong. A startup from Cambridge, MA called Vapor Communications has already achieved the ability to send scents via the oPhone, and its now getting ready to take digitizing scents to the next level with the oCase.

This might sound like a downgrade because the oPhone name gives you the impression that it’s an actual phone, but it’s not. The oPhone (pictured below) is actually a separate device that works in conjunction with the oSnap app to send oNotes. This device can receive oNotes with up to 300,000 different scents.

After a successful Indiegogo campaign, which enabled 10,000 people to try out the oPhone for $149, Vapor Communications wants to commercialize the concept with the oCase. The oCase will work the same way, but it doesn’t require the bulky oPhone device, so people will be able to receive scents on-the-go, and at any time.

Here’s a quick video showing the reactions of a couple of people who tried out the oPhone at the American Natural History Museum last July.

Reaction After Experiencing the oPhone

Digitizing scents is already a huge accomplishment, but that’s only the tip of the iceberg, as can be seen in Vapor’s partnership with the Center for Assessment Technology and Continuous Health (CATCH). CATCH was co-founded and is led by Dennis Ausiello, the Jackson distinguished professor of clinical medicine and chief emeritus of medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital. Ausiello wants to use the oCase, and the entire oPlatform, to study the relationship between a person’s health state and their scent sensitivity. This could lead to a new generation of scent therapies to treat metabolic and cognitive diseases.

The oCase was on display for the first time on October 7 at a dinner held in honor of the Catalan chef Ferran Adria at Café ArtScience in Cambridge, MA. The plan is for the oCase to launch next spring. At that time Vapor Communications will launch oNotes 2.0, which will bring the oSnap functionality into the oNotes app. For now the app will only be available on the iPhone and iPad.

If you can’t wait until spring for the oCase, the original oPhone will become available to all this November for $199 at onotes.com.

It’s pretty amazing to think that soon we will be able to transmit scents to our noses the same way that sound gets delivered to our ears.

Robert Nazarian
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Robert Nazarian became a technology enthusiast when his parents bought him a Radio Shack TRS-80 Color. Now his biggest…
The best Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus cases and covers
Samsung Galaxy s10 plus hands-on

The Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus has a beautiful glass body with barely any bezel around the huge display, but if you want to keep your phone in pristine condition, investing in a protective case is one of the easiest and most effective ways to keep it protected. 

But which case is the best choice for you? There's no shortage of cases for a premium flagship device like the Galaxy S10 Plus, but not every case is going to fit your needs. So whether you're looking for a basic clear case, a rugged protective cover, or a multi-use wallet folio, we've picked some of the best Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus cases around.
Our top picks
Tech21 Evo Check Case

Read more
The best Nokia 5.4 cases and covers
Nokia 5 4 Back

The Nokia 5.4 may be a budget smartphone, but it looks more appealing than its price would indicate. With a 6.39-inch edge-to-edge display and a plastic rear that looks very sleek in the Polar Night color, its design gives the impression of costing more than it really does. However, even if its plastic rear should make it a bit more durable than the average glass-based phone, you'll need a case if you want it to remain intact for as long as you use it.

That's why we've put together this list of the best Nokia 5.4 cases you can buy right now. It covers everything from slimline transparent cases to wallet cases and more rugged, heavy-duty covers, with options to suit all tastes and budgets.
Osophter protective cell phone cover

Read more
The best OnePlus 8T cases and covers
OnePlus 8T

There's no denying the OnePlus 8T is a gorgeous smartphone, whether you opt for it in Lunar Silver or Aquamarine Green. Its aluminum body, 6.55-inch screen, and superfast charging ensure it's a killer choice, but it doesn't come cheap. With prices starting at $600, you're going to want to keep your new OnePlus 8T protected, and that's where a good protective case comes in. We've picked out some of the best cases that not only offer protection for your phone but also look pretty stylish to boot.
Spigen Ultra Hybrid Case

Spigen's Ultra Hybrid case is, as the name suggests, a hybrid of a rigid, clear polycarbonate back and flexible, shock-absorbent TPU bumper. Offering military-grade drop protection, this case has a cool, minimalist style that's ideal for anyone wanting to show off their new OnePlus 8T. Raised bumpers around the screen and camera provide additional protection, while tactile button covers provide that satisfyingly clicky feel when pressed. For under $30, this is one of the best protective cases you'll find.

Read more