Smartphone-Controlled Suitcase Follows Users Through The Airport
Free up your hands for a more relaxing stroll to the departure gate.
The James Dyson Award-winning Hop is a self-driven suitcase being prototyped by designer Rodrigo Garcia Gonzalez. Embedding the function of a bellhop within the luggage itself, the Hop links suitcase to traveller through the traveller’s smartphone.
To set the suitcase in motion, the smartphone sends out a bluetooth signal that is recieved by three sensors in the suitcase. Triangulating the signal, the sensors detect the location of the smartphone and a connected microprocessor drives two caterpillar tracks to keep up with the smartphone’s whereabouts.
In the case that the signal is lost, the suitcase locks itself and the user is alerted with a phone vibration. Suitcases can be programmed to follow another suitcase or controlled by the operating staff at an airport or other public location.
While the video below shows the Hop cheerfully trailing a relaxed traveller down hallways and around corners, questions remain regarding its ability to travel at a quick pace, weight capacity and security issues.
For those of us who have struggled with juggling a jacket, sandwich, coffee, child’s hand and a carry-on handle while enroute to the departure gate, the Hop provides an attractive alternative, as well as inspires further invention for making travel day – or any weight burdened activity – more carefree to manage.
During a webinar on Thursday July 13th at 10am, the PSFK research team will be presenting findings from our most recent report, Future of Manufacturing. For this project, we looked at how brands and organizations can meet elevated consumer needs and combat increased market competition by leveraging connected technologies that give total insights to manage their end-to-end operations and the opportunity to integrate cutting-edge technologies to reinvent supply chains.
Christina Agapakis, creative director at Ginkgo Bioworks, discussed how she uses her background in science and collaborates with engineers, designers, artists and social scientists to explore the many unexpected connections between microbiology, technology, art and popular culture.