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带定位、充电和Wi-Fi热点功能的智能行李箱

Smart Luggage for the Connected Age
带定位、充电和Wi-Fi热点功能的智能行李箱

It wasn’t long ago that the main selling point of a piece of luggage was its durability — think American Tourister and its rather excitable gorilla.

不久之前,行李箱的主要卖点还是耐用性——想想美旅箱包(American Tourister)广告里那只爱激动的大猩猩吧。

Not for Kevin Harwood.

凯文·哈伍德(Kevin Harwood)却不这么想。

Like many travelers today, he is looking for technology to go along with durability. He stumbled across a carry-on bag controlled by smartphone — with a Bluetooth-enabled lock, GPS tracking and a USB port for recharging a device. It has a built-in scale, too.

和如今的很多旅行者一样,除了耐用,他还追求科技含量。他偶然发现了一款可用智能手机操控的随身行李箱,它有蓝牙锁、GPS定位服务以及可以给电子设备充电的USB接口。它还有一个内置秤。

“I’m a little bit of a geek, always looking for products that extend from my phone, that connect my world and me,” said Mr. Harwood, a 30-year-old software developer from Austin, Tex.

“我有点像极客,总是在寻找手机的延伸产品,把我的世界和我联系起来,”30岁的哈伍德说。他是得克萨斯州奥斯汀的一名软件开发工程师。

Why should luggage be any different?

行李箱为什么要有特别之处呢?

At the crowdfunding site Indiegogo he was among the first to buy into a start-up called Bluesmart that is developing a connected bag. Mr. Harwood has plenty of company. Bluesmart raised more than $2 million from more than 10,000 backers, far surpassing its goal.

哈伍德是最早在众筹网站Indiegogo上支持创业公司Bluesmart的人之一,该公司正在开发一款能与手机相连的箱包。有很多人想得跟哈伍德一样。Bluesmart从一万多名支持者那里筹集了200多万美元,远远超出筹款目标。

Bluesmart, which expects to deliver its first bags in October, is part of what has become a stampede of businesses — both start-up and established — into the nascent connected luggage industry.

Bluesmart计划今年10月推出第一批箱包。一大批公司正在涌入新兴的智能箱包产业,既包括创业公司,也包括知名企业。

On Tuesday, Samsonite will introduce a new line of GeoTrakR suitcases, containing a cellular-enabled baggage-tracking system from LugLoc, at the Travel Goods Association trade show in Las Vegas. Andiamo will introduce a new carry-on with a Wi-Fi hotspot, battery charger and other features.

周二,新秀丽公司(Samsonite)将在拉斯维加斯的旅行用品协会(Travel Goods Association)展销会上推出新的GeoTrakR系列手提箱,它装备有LugLoc公司的手机操控行李追踪系统。Andiamo箱包公司将推出一款新随身行李箱,它具备Wi-Fi热点和电池充电器等功能。

Delsey has been soliciting feedback since late last year for its Pluggage line of smart suitcases.

法国大使箱包公司(Delsey)从去年年底开始征集对它的Pluggage智能手提箱系列的反馈意见。

Even telecom companies are interested. AT&T is researching development of a smart bag, described in a YouTube video posted last summer, that tracks a bag from airport to airport. Rimowa, a German luggage manufacturer, is jointly developing a smart suitcase line called Bag2Go with Airbus and Deutsche Telekom. The new bags, expected to be available next year, will interact with sensors in the cargo holds of Airbus aircraft to identify their location.

甚至连电信公司也对此产生了兴趣。根据去年夏天发布在Youtube上的一段视频,AT&T电信公司正在研发一款智能手提箱,它能在机场之间追踪行李箱。德国行李箱制造商Rimowa正与空客公司(Airbus)、德国电信(Deutsche Telekom)携手开发Bag2Go智能手提箱系列。这些新手提箱计划明年上市,它们可以同空客飞机货舱中的感应器互动,以确定位置。

纽约时报中英文网 http://www.qqenglish.com/

“Adding electronic capability and communications to baggage makes a lot of sense,” said Frank Gillett, an analyst at Forrester Research. “What you’re seeing is the first round of innovation that will take time to evolve. The goal is to improve the travel experience.”

“让行李箱具备电子和通讯功能很有意义,”弗雷斯特研究公司(Forrester Research)的分析师弗兰克·吉勒特(Frank Gillett)说,“你现在看到的是第一轮创新,它需要时间继续发展。目标是改善旅行体验。”

Hanif Perry, a 32-year-old New York-based marketing consultant who also participated in Bluesmart’s Indiegogo campaign, said he liked its bag’s laptop pocket. The carry-on, he said, “is more purposefully designed for the younger traveler who carries all devices.”

32岁的哈尼夫·佩里(Hanif Perry)是纽约的营销顾问,他也参与了Bluesmart的众筹活动。他说,他喜欢这种行李箱的手提电脑口袋。他说,这种随身行李箱“更针对携带各种电子设备的年轻旅行者”。

Bluesmart is not the only luggage venture raising money through crowdfunding. Trunkster collected $1.4 million from 3,500 investors through Kickstarter, easily surpassing its goal. Jesse Potash, a co-founder, said it would release a carry-on and a suitcase in late summer.

Bluesmart不是唯一一家以众筹方式筹集资金的箱包公司。Trunkster公司通过Kickstarter网站从3500名投资人那里筹集了140万美元,轻松超出筹款目标。该公司的联合创始人杰西·波塔什(Jesse Potash)说,该公司将于今年夏末推出一款随身行李箱和一款手提箱。

Trunkster’s bags will have a tracking system, a scale and a battery with two USB chargers, Mr. Potash said, as well as a roll-top entry providing quick access.

波塔什说,Trunkster的行李箱将配备追踪系统、秤、含两个USB充电器的电池,以及能快速打开的卷盖。

The push for the connected bag solves one of the most vexing problems for travelers — lost luggage.

智能行李箱的开发能解决最令旅行者烦恼的一件事——行李丢失。

“The last thing that you want to have happen is an unwelcome surprise of a suitcase disappearing,” said Henry Harteveldt, travel analyst for Atmosphere Research Group. “This is peace-of-mind technology.”

“行李丢失是人们最不希望发生的,这种意外特别讨厌,”大气研究集团(Atmosphere Research Group)的旅行分析师亨利·哈特维尔特(Henry Harteveldt)说,“这项技术能让人放心。”<纽约时报中英文网 http://www.qqenglish.com/>

Need a speaker in your suitcase? Hontus Ltd. is slated to introduce its Space Case 1 smart luggage this fall through its Planet Traveler USA unit. Besides cellular-enabled tracking, features will include a digital lock, built-in scale and Bluetooth speaker, said its chief executive, Harry Sheikh.

你的行李箱需要一个扬声器?Hontus箱包公司计划今年秋季通过它的星球旅行者美国分部(Planet Traveler USA)推出太空箱1号智能行李箱系列(Space Case 1)。该公司的首席执行官哈里·谢赫(Harry Sheikh)说,除了手机操控的追踪系统外,这款行李箱还有数码锁、内置秤和蓝牙扬声器等功能。

Samsonite said its new line of smart suitcases, made of ballistic-weave nylon, would be in stores by late summer and come in four models.

新秀丽公司说,它的新智能手提箱系列由防弹尼龙制成,将于夏末上市,共推出四个款式。

Catherine De Bleeker, global marketing director for Paris-based Delsey, said her company planned to offer its Pluggage line of three smart bags in the first half of 2016, with a possible price of $600 for a 24-inch model; she said Delsey is still collecting feedback from the public about what features these should have.

巴黎法国大使箱包公司的全球营销主管凯瑟琳·德·布勒克尔(Catherine De Bleeker)说,该公司计划于2016年上半年推出Pluggage系列,它包括三款智能手提箱,24英寸款的售价可能是600美元。她说,该公司仍在征集公众反馈,以决定让手提箱具备哪些功能。

She also said that Delsey was exploring possible collaboration on the suitcases’ tracking capability with Air France, with which it already has a licensing agreement for co-branded luggage, and with airports.

她还说,公司正在考虑与法国航空公司(Air France)及各大机场合作,开发手提箱的追踪功能。该公司已获得生产法航联名行李箱的特许权。

Travelers who want to track their bags but not replace luggage they already own, or who are concerned about a suitcase’s embedded tracking system possibly malfunctioning, have another option: free-standing devices.

有些旅行者想进行定位追踪,但是不想更换现有行李箱;也有人担心手提箱的内置追踪系统可能失灵,他们还有另一个选择:独立设备。

Beside LugLoc — which uses Bluetooth and GSM technology and costs $70, plus additional search fees — there is Trakdot, whose GSM device texts and emails users the location of their checked suitcase when their plane lands and costs $50, plus an annual service fee of $20.

比如LugLoc和Trakdot。前者用蓝牙和GSM技术定位行李箱,设备费70美元,搜索费另付。后者的GSM设备会在飞机落地后给用户发短信或邮件告知托运行李箱的位置,费用是50美元,外加20美元的年费。

Franck Dubarry, founder of Lev Technology, said his company would introduce a Smart Unit device this summer that will tell users where their bags are after flights. It will cost $99, plus activation and other fees.

列夫科技公司(Lev Technology)的创始人弗兰克·迪巴里(Franck Dubarry)说,今年夏天他的公司将推出一款智能部件,它能在飞行结束后告诉用户行李箱的位置。设备费为99美元,外加激活和其他费用。

To comply with regulations governing personal electronic devices, the tracking systems are generally designed to automatically shut down once they are stored and to automatically turn back on once a plane lands.

为了遵守个人电子设备的管理规定,箱包追踪系统通常会在行李存放妥当之后自动关闭,飞机落地后自动开启。

Experts say this new smart baggage represents just the first wave of this equipment.

专家们说,这种新智能行李箱只是这类设备的第一波浪潮。

“Products that make travel easier and better for customers quickly spread throughout the market,” said Michele Marini Pittenger, president of the Travel Goods Association. “To use recent examples, we’ve seen lightweight bags, expandable cases and four-wheeled luggage rapidly become the new normal,” she said.

“让旅行更轻松、更舒适的产品通常会快速席卷市场,”旅行用品协会主席米歇尔·马里尼·皮滕杰(Michele Marini Pittenger)说,“以近些年的一些产品为例,我们已看到,轻型箱包、可扩容箱包和四轮行李箱很快成了新的常规产品。”

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