Lickable TV prototype in development that could bring food flavours into your front room

·2-min read

An invention by a Japanese professor could take us one step closer to a multi-sensory viewing experience.

A prototype of a lickable TV, dubbed Taste the TV (TTTV), with the ability to imitate food flavours is being developed.

The TV works by combining sprays from a carousel of 10 flavour canisters which can replicate the taste of particular foods.

The food flavoured spray is then rolled out on hygienic film over a flat TV screen for the viewer to taste.

Meiji University professor Homei Miyashita hopes the technology can help people connect and interact, especially during the COVID-19 era.

In the future, the inventor imagines a world in which flavours could be downloaded and enjoyed in a similar way to music.

"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," he said.

He suggested that the device could be used for distance learning for sommeliers and cooks or tasting games and quizzes for families and friends to play at home.

Prof Miyashita has considered collaborating with companies to create a spray technology that could apply the taste of chocolate or pizza to a slice of bread.

Several flavour-related products

TTTV was developed by Prof Miyashita and a group of 30 students who have also created several flavour-related products, including a fork that makes food taste richer.

The professor said he spent a year building the TTTV prototype himself.

It is estimated that the final product would cost around 100,000 yen (about £650) to make.

A Meiji student demonstrated the TTTV by telling the invention to she wanted to taste sweet chocolate.

'Like a chocolate sauce'

An automated device repeated the order, after a few tries. The TV spritzed the sample onto a lickable sheet.

"It's kind of like milk chocolate," she said. "It's sweet like a chocolate sauce."

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