We don't regularly cover crowdfunding campaigns here on Tnooz, as it can often be difficult to determine who is likely to succeed at building the promoted product and who may not manage completion despite the funds raised.
However, the Bluesmart is a bit different, offering a newly minted way to interact and travel with a suitcase while also heralding a pedigreed team of engineers, industrial designers and MBAs.
The product is essentially a smart suitcase, which has a companion app to facilitate the free flow of information that is the hallmark of the digital age. The app will be available for Android and iPhone, and acts as the conduit of essential data from the physical suitcase.
The suitcase reimagines what a bag would be for the tech traveler of today, and thus offers the following features via its integrated suitcase and app:
- A handle that has a built-in scale to see the weight of the bag.
- A digitally-controlled lock that automatically locks if you step away from the bag.
- A proximity sensor that pings the owner's phone if separated from the bag.
- A locator if the bag has been mishandled.
- External protected pocket for electronics.
- In-built battery charger to charge electronics on the go.
- Four wheels for flexible motion.
- Travel tracking to provide data on trips, and overall miles traveled.
- TSA-approved certification.
The team has spent the last year building the components and prototyping the product design. Alejo, the industrial designer behind the design, says this about the product:
Suitcases haven't seen much innovation for several decades. So we set about how to reimagine how a suitcase for this century should be. We created a product that is beautiful and powerful and yet remarkably simple to use.
The Bluesmart is a function of modern design, reflecting the sleek minimalism of the era while also using the texture of the materials as an added design element. The team spent time and effort to create the following video, which is an excellent sales pitch and a clear driver to conversion for the successful campaign.
In comments to Tnooz, co-founder Brian Chen credited teamwork for the campaign's launch success:
It took a small army of people to get this thing off the ground. We’ve had hundreds of people help us create the prototype and shoot the video. Between the founding team and everyone who helped, we assembled a list of tens of thousands of people who we know are interested in travel and tech, and it seems that the community was ready for this product.Crowdfunding changes everything for hardware entrepreneurs. Crowdfunding means that we can demonstrate traction for our product without having to raise boatloads of money from investors, or having to approach manufacturers empty-handed. Most importantly, crowdfunding means that our customers are 100% aligned with the success of our project.
In only a few hours, the crowdfunding campaign has met its $50k goal, and is selling more $10k an hour in its initial launch. At this rate, the Bluesmart is on track to be one of the most successful travel technology crowdfunding projects yet, and one of the more popular ones of the year on the Indiegogo platform.
View the campaign here and more about the Bluesmart team here.