Teen entrepreneur Kickstarts first aromatic alarm clock

Sensorwake olfactory alarm clock.
Source: Kickstarter

It's time to wake up and smell the coffee, literally.

At least, that's what Guillaume Rolland, an 18-year-old French entrepreneur, intends with SensorWake, a new innovation in alarm clock technology.

Launched on Kickstarter on Wednesday, SensorWake is a device that awakens the user with a scent rather than an abrupt audio alarm. It is designed to transition the sleeper from a deep sleep to a lighter sleep and then to a waking state. The project has already garnered more than $30,000 on the crowdfunding site.

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Rolland's olfactory alarm clock was previously named one of the top 15 inventions at the 2014 Google Science Fair and earned him a a gold medal at the 2014 European Lépine Awards.

Each device comes with a pack of two 100 percent recyclable capsules with distinct scent profiles:

  • Continental breakfast: Espresso & Hot Croissant
  • Candy Rush: Sweet peach & Strawberry candy
  • Enjoy the break: Seaside (monoi, tiare flower) & Lush Jungle (cut grass, leaves)
  • Invigorating Aromatherapy: Purifying Tea Tree & Harmonious Chocolate
  • Vitalization Aromatherapy: Stimulating Ginger & Invigorating Pepper Mint

The VIP package is available to Kickstarter backers only and includes scents like ebony luxury and dollar—which, yes, smells like cash. Each capsule can be used 60 times before needing to be replaced.

The scents have been created by Givaudan, a company that specializes in fragrances and flavors, and are solvent-free, compliant with international regulations, and will not leave residue on surfaces.

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According to Rolland and his team, a consumer test of the diffusion system resulted in 99 percent of users waking up in less than two minutes. For deep sleepers or those with a stuffy nose, the SensorWake also has a traditional alarm that will go off after three minutes.

The expected retail price after a November 2015 launch will be around $119 for consumers in the U.S. with refill capsules costing $9.