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Louis Vuitton Echo

April 5, 2018.

Louis Vuitton Echo.

LV Echo. © Louis Vuitton.

Louis Vuitton, the leather maker best known for its overpriced handbags and luggage emblazoned with loud monograms that turn you into a walking billboard for the luxury brand, is venturing into high tech with the same formula: overpriced and monogrammed. It has launched LV Echo, a $425 CAD luggage tracker that allows you to pinpoint the location of your $4,000 suitcase in various international airports. This tracker uses Sigfox’s Monarch technology, which interestingly doesn’t rely on mobile networks or WIFI, but on a specialised IoT/M2M network, one that’s dedicated to low speed communications, on radio frequencies between 862 and 928 MHz (Ultra Narrow Band, UNB) based on geographic zones. Networks on frequencies lower than kHZ are not suitable for broadband, but do have many specific advantages: some UNB frequencies don’t require user licences, their wave range is very long, and reception and transmission requires much less energy for connected devices. The LV Echo knows to automatically switch to usable radio frequencies in different regions of the world. Thanks to a light sensor, it can also detect when the bag is opened, and generate an alert. The device’s battery life is six months, and it comes with a three-year subscription to Sigfox. It works in more than one hundred international airports, but not in Canada, for the moment. The partner application to see the location of your precious baggage is available for Android and iOS.

Circuit Breaker, “Louis Vuitton made a $370 luggage tracker.”