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Olfy: we smelled the future of VR [Laval Virtual 2023]

This article is also available in: French

At Laval Virtual 2023, we met with Olfy, a French startup aimed at providing smell on VR! We already discussed this product back in 2021. Since then, Olfy evolved quite a lot, and officially launched a commercial product last Fall.

In a nutshell, Olfy provides a small product that can be added to any VR headset. A small box, in the front of the headset, will release up to 3 different smells/perfumes and is controlled by the VR app.

Olfy is targeting several markets such as marketing and training: for example, a pine smell for a VR experience about a wood company, or burnt & gasline smells to train firefighters.
A French forensic police service also asked Olfy to help them train new recruits: the idea is to get them used to various smells they will have to face later on, such as dead bodies and chemicals.

We tried the product at Laval Virtual, with a pine scent. The experience was convincing, and the way scents are released seems efficient and subtle.

To integrate Olfy in your VR experience, a SDK for Unity is provided (a SDK for Unreal). The VR headset and Olfy are connected through Bluetooth or WiFi.
Olfy can be rented at a low price (about 300€ per month). You can also buy it for about 1500€ (5 perfumes, the software and 2 hours of training are included). Olfy also provides various services.

CEO and founder Clothilde Dubernet told us that she launched the company alone, but she is recruting a new partner, a “nose”: Olfy will therefore be able to develop new scents in-house. Clothilde Dubernet also explained that she is raising funds to expand the team, and that the plans to upgrade the product with 5 smells instead of 3.

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