NEW YORK CITY — Amazon Alexa can already turn off your lights and close your garage. Now it can also make your house smell like a Hawaiian vacation.
Prolitec, which calls itself a “scenting services company,” announced Monday that its Aera fragrance systems can now be voice controlled through the Amazon Echo smart speaker and other Alexa-compatible devices in the US market.
The Aera systems offer eight different fragrances, which range from pink grapefruit to basmati rice. The fragrance capsules can operate 24 hours a day and run for a full 60 days.
You can tell Alexa to turn Aera on, have Alexa raise or lower scent levels, or ask what the current scent levels are. If you already own an Aera, you can get it to work with Alexa by enabling the Aera skill in your Amazon Alexa app.
Aera is only the latest attempt to offer smart scents. In the 1950’s Hans Laube invented a “Smell-O-Vision” system for automated odor releases during movies. (Because who wouldn’t want to smell King Kong as he swings through New York?) And for the last 20 years, various companies have experimented with digitised scents that could be embedded in email or web pages.
Although the Aera for Alexa command probably isn’t quite what Laube was envisioning, it is yet another step forward for total smart home integration.