'Smart bag' technology could end lost luggage woes

New technology is being tested that could be a solution to the headache of airlines losing your luggage.  It’s a smart bag that users can track right from their smartphones, called the Bag2Go.

After announcing the product in June, Airbus is testing the technology this travel season.  The bag was developed in partnership with a luggage manufacturer and the telecom company T-Systems.

The companies think overhauling the outdated scan and barcode system for bag tracking should help travelers and airlines alike.

"We hope that we can improve the overall baggage handing processes today with Bag2Go,"Airbus innovation manager Jan Reh told Reuters. "We are working together with the industry... to make baggage more controllable for airlines and to give passengers a better travel experience.”

Reuters reports that with the baggage systems airlines currently have in place, more than 3,000 bags are at least temporarily lost each hour around the world. That’s more than 20 million lost or misplaced bags each year. With Bag2Go, when a bag ends up on the wrong flight, the owner and the airline are quickly alerted.

It all relies on a small SIM card – hardly new technology, but used here in a new way.

The bag’s owner punches flight details into a smartphone app. The app sends the info to the SIM card, allowing the bag, the owner and the airline to stay electronically connected throughout the flight.

"We just brought existing technologies together and optimized this for tracking and tracing. It's a combination of the new technology and ease of use and there is no further investment of the airport,” said Torsten Chudobba of T-Systems.


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