This Plugin Helps You Quit Smoking By Showing You How Much Money You've Saved

Smokers with Macs: help is on the way.
Ashwin Rodrigues
Brooklyn, US
Image: Shutterstock

If you’re a Mac user and cigarette smoker, you can ditch one of these expensive habits with the help of a new plugin. The Quit Smoking OSX App, a $5 plugin available for Macs, is a lightweight tool for quitters looking for motivation on their journey to freedom from tobacco.

This plugin is the latest creation from Diego Mariani, the London-based developer behind such products as “The Meltdown Mug,” the coffee mug which commemorates the Meltdown bug (and gives a portion of proceeds to Save the Children), and “Who is Mining,” a site which allows you to check if a website is secretly mining cryptocurrency with your precious CPU power. The idea behind the Quit Smoking plugin is to remind quitters how much time has passed since they’ve quit, and how much money they’ve saved from not buying cigarettes.


Screengrab: Quit Smoking OSX App Demo

There are only four inputs required to activate the Quit Smoking plugin: the date you quit smoking, the number of cigarettes you smoke a day, the cost of a pack, and the number of cigarettes per pack. The plugin will display and continually update how much money you’ve saved, the number of “non-smoked” cigarettes, and the amount of time you’ve been smoke-free.

Screengrab: Quit Smoking OSX App Demo

The Quit Smoking plugin is far from a complete smoking cessation program, and more like a “number of days since last incident” sign. It does not appear to account for relapses without resetting the count completely. When you’re trying to quit, it’s important to see small relapses as minor setbacks instead of catastrophes on your journey to cig-free life. Incorporating this change would be a small software update, but very significant for the user’s psyche. We can only hope this is addressed in a future update.

By placing the plugin in the Mac menu bar, hopeful quitters will see their non-smoking status whenever they check the time, their laptop’s battery status, or try to pair a Bluetooth device. The Mayo Clinic says urges to smoke probably last five to 10 minutes, so having the plugin next to a clock is an effective placement for an anti-smoking message.

Paying $5 for an app with simple counting functionality might seem laughable, and there are many free apps on both Apple and Google’s app stores to support smokers looking to quit. Coughing up cash may strengthen the commitment to quitting, since users have a financial cost to rationalize. The reasoning behind the plugin’s cost is probably more simple, however. “I need monies m8,” said an account apparently belonging to Diego, the app’s creator, when asked on Product Hunt about the price tag.

Every year, over 480,000 people die from tobacco use and secondhand smoke according to the American Lung Association, so any attempt to curb smoking is commendable. If it works, the plugin pays for itself in days, and if it doesn’t work, at least you have $5 less to buy cigarettes with.

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