When Google launched Project Jacquard four years ago, the goal was to use the smart fabric technology to create more smart wearables apart from smartwatches. While it’s still not a household name and there are only a few that can afford it, there have been several products released like Levi’s jean jackets, Saint Laurent’s Cit-E backpack, and Adidas and EA’s GMR shoe insert. Now they are introducing a fourth product that uses the Jacquard tag, the Samsonite Konnect-i backpack.
In case you’ve never encountered the Jacquard technology yet, Google launched it to be able to partner with manufacturers to create products that can have touch sensitivity to access certain smart functions. The system is powered by the Jacquard tag which can be charged through a mini-USB port. The gestures you can assign functions are pretty limited since all you can do is basically brush up, brush down, and double-tap.
They have now partnered with Samsonite to create the Konnect-i backpack which comes in two styles: Slim and Standard. The difference is the slim version has a vertical zipper while the standard version has a horizontal one. As a bag itself, it has the usual Samsonite quality with lots of pockets and compartments including a padded one for your laptop of course. But of course it’s more than just a backpack as it has been “infused” with smart technology.
You can customize the gestures that you can do with the left strap using the Jacquard app. For example, you can use it to trigger a selfie on your smartphone, deliver call and text notifications to you while you’re walking or traveling, control your music, and even trigger Google Assistant to share the latest news. You can also let the LED light on the left strap light up depending on the alerts that you’ve set.
The Samsonite Konnect-i backpacks are available at the Samsonite online store. The Slim style is priced at $199 while the Standard is slightly more expensive at $219.