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Popcorn-wafting Poptopia may be first scented mobile game

Pop Secret launches an iOS game with a popcorn-scent-emitting dongle. Is this the world's first smell-enhanced mobile game?

Amanda Kooser
Freelance writer Amanda C. Kooser covers gadgets and tech news with a twist for CNET. When not wallowing in weird gear and iPad apps for cats, she can be found tinkering with her 1956 DeSoto.
Amanda Kooser
Poptopia app and dongle
The smell of popcorn without having to make it. Pop Secret

Branded mobile games have become a common marketing tactic for companies. Pop Secret and its Poptopia game is no different in this regard. However, Pop Secret took it a step further and created a device called the Pop Dongle to work with its game.

The dongle, designed by the innovation studio Deeplocal, plugs into the audio-out port of your iOS device and emits a popcorn smell as you play the game. Each dongle contains enough popcorn juice to spray 500 to 1,000 times. Pop Secret is billing it as "the first-ever scented mobile gaming experience."

The game itself is a reasonable diversion that requires you to pop kernels into popcorn at just the right moment to please a disembodied mouth.

Unfortunately, most people won't get a chance to indulge in the scent elements. The general public has an opportunity to buy the scent dongle on eBay. Bidding is currently just over $150 with three days to go. All of the proceeds from the sale go to the Red Cross.

Your reaction to this news may largely hinge on whether or not you like the smell of microwave popcorn. If you're one of those people who gets grossed out by the lingering odor of popcorn wafting from the office break room, then I don't recommend seeking out the scent experience. Stick to Infinity Blade and Candy Crush instead.