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VR Could Help People Quit Smoking

MindCotine is an ecosystem of projects that guides people through the process of kicking their habit using virtual reality

The chance to simulate reality using VR technology has presented a wealth of solutions, particularly in the healthcare field. It’s being used to help train doctors, teach first aid and even acclimate children to daunting procedures. This Kickstarter project wants to use VR to fix another health problem: smoking.

MindCotine is a complete ecosystem, involving a package with VR headset, a program and an app. The program has 14 steps per round at 20 minutes each. For example, the first one subjects users to situations that are not really there, making the user feel like he or she is smoking using a high-tech sort of Cue Exposure Therapy.

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The program also promotes mindfulness. In many stages of the MindCotine program, the user will have to break down the experience of smoking into specific emotions or experiences. Through this, the program hopes that the user will be able to more deeply under why the habit exists.

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To make the program more interactive to the user, MindCotine also uses bio-sensing. The user’s tone of voice is analyzed and existing smartphone hardware is used to measure pulse. According to the crowdfunding page, these readings will decide the next step for the user.

The three co-founders are VR developer Cristian Witman, biomedical engineer and organizational psychologist Emilio Goldenhersch.

The team strongly believes in making their kits as widely accessible as possible and to do so, they’re raising $18,000 on Kickstarter. The kit will retail at just $15 a pop, the same price as two packs of cigarettes in the United States or four packs in China.

MindCotine on Kickstarter

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