• 10 flavor canisters are used to create different combinations of desired taste
  • A hygienic film is rolled onto the screen for users to try the flavor
  • A commercial version of the TTTV prototype would cost $875 to make

A Japanese professor has created a device called Taste the TV (TTTV), which allows users to do exactly what its name suggests. The device is a prototype lickable TV screen that can mimic different food flavors. The invention not only takes us further down the path of a multi-sensory viewing experience, but it also means a user could eventually taste a dish made in the kitchen of a world-class restaurant miles away without even stepping out of the house.

Professor Homei Miyashita, who spent the past year building the TTTV prototype, said the technology could help individuals interact with the outside world better especially when people have been spending more and more time at home due to the pandemic, according to Reuters.

"The goal is to make it possible for people to have the experience of something like eating at a restaurant on the other side of the world, even while staying at home," the Meiji University professor said.

The device works with a system made of 10 flavor canisters such as salty, sour, sweet, bitter, spicy and savory. These canisters spray different combinations of the flavors onto a sheet of hygienic film that is then rolled over the TV or tablet screen. The user can then take a lick of the sample.

Miyashita said a commercial version of the TV would cost around $875 to make, as reported by BBC.

The professor has come out with a number of flavor-related devices with the help of about 30 students in the past. One of these devices is a fork that can make food taste richer. Miyashita believes the TTTV could serve a great purpose when it comes to distance learning for cooks and sommeliers.

Currently, Miyashita is in touch with companies and is discussing ways through which the spray technology can be used; it could mean that, someday, users can spray the flavor of pizza onto their crackers or the taste of chocolate onto their toast every morning.

Just like users can easily download music these days, Miyashita hopes that users can download tastes from a platform sometime in the future.

“I am thinking of making a platform where tastes from all over the world can be distributed as ‘taste content.’ It’s the same as watching a movie or listening to a song that you like,” Miyashita said in a Reuters video. "I hope people can, in the future, download and enjoy the flavors of the food from the restaurants they fancy, regardless of where they are based in the future.”

Representative image Credit: Pixabay