Connected luggage sets are easy to find these days, but Bluesmart stands out: as one of the first out of the gate, it has experience its rivals lack. You'll be glad to hear, then, that the company is back for another round. It's crowdfunding Series 2 luggage that builds on the existing formula with some features that, at first blush, appear to be genuinely practical. Both the 22-inch Cabin carry-on bag and 29-inch Check suitcase include a combination of 3G cellular and GPS that lets you track your luggage anywhere in the world (with cellular reception, at least) for free. If your luggage goes to Bhutan instead of Boston, you'll know it.
The two also include automatic locking when you wander out of range, and the carry-on's built-in battery is quicker at charging devices. You can top up a laptop (Bluesmart doesn't say which) in 2.5 hours. That carry-on is also much better for extended trips, as it has both 25 percent more capacity and a 30-day battery life instead of the original's 7.
There's a connected laptop bag and a passport pouch too, although their size limits them to Bluetooth tracking. The laptop bag touts its own removable battery pack to charge two USB devices at the same time.
Bluesmart has already hit its crowdfunding target, but it's not too late to get a discount if you move quickly. The carry-on is available for a $295 pledge (about half the $595 retail price) as of this writing, while the suitcase goes for $325 (normally $695). The laptop bag and passport pouch go for $195 and $95 respectively. Most of these travel companions will ship in November if all goes according to plan. That's a lot to shell out and won't satisfy you if you're looking for a truly cavernous checked bag (the Check holds 80 liters). Even so, the price might be justifiable if you can't stand the thought of losing your belongings during a lengthy trip.