New Rules Kill Smart Luggage Makers

New Rules Kill Smart Luggage Makers
Changes to airline policies have driven two smart luggage makers out of business.

(CCM) — Raden and Bluesmart, makers of smart luggage, have been forced to close by changes to major airline policies which mean that all luggage must have removable batteries, the BBC is reporting.

Smart luggage offers features such as built-in weight sensors, remote locking and unlocking from an app, and location awareness which allows the owner to see exactly their luggage is at any moment in time. Most also offer a charging port so that owners can recharge their phone or tablet by plugging it to their luggage while on the move.

"Our intent was to add ease and simplicity to your travel experience and this unforeseen policy change has made this impossible," Raden said on its website, explaining its closure. Existing owners of Raden and Bluesmart luggage will be able to continue using their apps to control their luggage for the moment, but refunds and replacements will not be available, the report said.

The closure of the two companies comes as no surprise to many commentators, given the safety and security issues that surround travelling with large batteries and radio transmitters. "The integration of lithium-ion batteries and radio technologies such as Bluetooth and cellular connections was always going to make smart luggage a veritable minefield," Ben Wood, an analyst from CCS Insight, said in the BBC report.

Image: © Raden.