Romance over the phone can be sealed with a kiss | The Times
Sometimes making “mwah” noises or texting lots of Xs isn’t enough. You want to give the person at the other end of the phone line a big old smooch.
Soon you may be able to. Researchers from London, Malaysia and Japan have created the “Kissenger”, which connects to your mobile phone and lets you physically lock lips from afar.
The device, which is named for kiss-messenger rather than after the US diplomat, connects to the bottom of your smartphone so that the rubber lip pad sits underneath the screen, where you can display a live video link of your loved one’s face.
High-precision force sensors are embedded under the lip pad to measure different parts of your lips during a kiss. The device sends this data to your phone. It is then transmitted to your partner’s phone, where small pistons embedded in the kiss-pad reproduce your mouth movements.
Emma Yann Zhang, a PhD researcher at City University, London, said: “Regular physical contact is essential for maintaining intimacy. We developed Kissenger with the aim of enabling remote intimate physical interactions.”
Fans of the TV sitcom The Big Bang Theory may think this is pretty much the kissing-machine invented by Howard on the show, only more portable and without the tongue. Early prototypes of the gadget did incorporate a bar on the kiss pad that resembled the tip of a tongue. However, Ms Zhang said: “People thought it was a bit gross.”
The device, which is still a prototype, was presented by Ms Zhang at the “Love and Sex with Robots” conference at Goldsmiths, University of London.