ForwardX, a Beijing-based robotics company, has developed the world’s first artificially intelligent carry-on suitcase called the Ovis—and it’s a doozie.
By blending self-driving and vision-powered technologies, the Ovis is able to recognize and track its owner with impressive accuracy.
“Through top-level facial-recognition algorithms, Ovis is able to recognize its owner’s face,” explains Guangpen Zhang, Head of CV at ForwardX, “And the groundbreaking deep-learning technology also allows Ovis to follow accurately and smoothly.”
According to Zhang, the Ovis can even navigate through “sophisticated environments”—areas with lots of things and people to bump into.
The secret to Ovis’s dodging skills? Driverless technology. Ovis’s front-facing camera takes in visual information and sends it to its Robotic Operating System (ROS) for processing. “The obstacle avoidance algorithm of Ovis is based on autonomous driving technology,” says Xiayi Chen, CTO at ForwardX.
The ROS is so advanced, that, according to Chen, the Ovis can calculate both the distance and direction of objects within an error of +/- 1cm! In especially crowded areas, the Ovis can activate the second camera in its handle for added precision.
More than a robot-ninja-caddy…
At just under 10 pounds, the Ovis comes packed with custom features:
- TSA-approved detachable battery
- Telescopic handle with additional camera
- TSA-approved electronic (and mechanical) locks
- Round the clock GPS tracking
- Internal weight sensor
- USB charging port for charging devices on-the-go (no more competing for the terminal outlet!)
The Ovis also comes with a customizable app, which functions a two-way communicator between owner and case. The app lets users check on things like battery life, bag weight, GPS tracker, etc. And, if for some reason the app can’t be accessed or the phone dies, users also have the option of wearing… (Drumroll)… the Ovis smartband! The wristband alerts users when their bag is more than two meters away, battery is running low, or any other tech issues pop up.
What happens if the battery dies?
ForwardX claims the Ovis can go about 20 km on a single charge (obviously using the Ovis to charge other devices will decrease this amount). However, if the battery flatlines, the Ovis’s wheels automatically become omni-directional and the whole thing simply turns into one of those old-timey suitcases you pull by hand (a full recharge takes about four hours).
Brawn matches brain
The Ovis’s shell is constructed of polypropylene and carbon fiber, but you can probably crack it with some anti-tank rounds. Additionally, it’s got 34-liter interior capacity, durable, noise-reducing wheels, and can reach a top speed of 6.2 mph (twice the average walking speed of a human).
And remember, next time you’re stuck in a crowded airport, just tell people your bag is possessed. That should clear a path.
The Ovis is on track to debut later this Fall, but if you preorder now, you’ll get up to 60% off coming to $339 before shipping which isn’t that bad for a top of the line suitcase.