Smokers looking to quit their habit may soon get a little assistance from an unexpected ally: their cigarette pack.
According to the New York Daily News, U.K. researchers from Stirling University have created talking cigarette packs that are designed to offer a little tough love to smokers. Every time the pack is opened, an audio recording plays, detailing a few of the health risks of smoking.
The anti-smoking packs were tested among a group of women ages 16-24, and many said the packs would make them think about quitting or cutting back because they were so aggravating. The Scotsman also reports that many considered stopping because they found the recorded warning that smoking reduces fertility "off-putting."
One of the project's researchers, Crawford Moodie, said that the team looked to use tobacco companies' packaging changes to their own benefit.
"In the future we may see packs that play music or talk, so we wanted to see if that could be used for our purposes," he told the Scotsman. "With the talking packs, people thought they were annoying, but that is a really good way to capture attention. It created a lot of interest."
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The BBC reports the study will continue with an expanded group of men and women ages 16 and older.
The new research follows reports that the e-cigarette market continues to expand, with sales expected to top $1 billion in the next few years, according to Bloomberg BusinessWeek, even as debate about the safety of this nonsmoking option continues.