Pop quiz: what do you get when a leading mobile carrier partners with a smart luggage brand? A super smart suitcase designed to keep you connected. And, in this case, one you can practically spot from 35,000 feet in the air.
T-Mobile teamed up with New York-based luggage brand Samsara Luggage to design a suitcase filled with most of the things you need to stay productive while traveling.
The result is Un-carrier On (opens in new tab), a smart carry-on that is packed with useful smart features. It’s now available for pre-order for $325 (excluding tax) in the US, and in true T-Mobile fashion, it comes in one shade and one shade only: magenta.
As for its smart features, it comes with what you would expect from smart luggage, which is a removable power bank and a USB-C port for charging. But it also does, with a flat work surface to place your laptop on, Samsara’s Tag Smart luggage tracking, an adjustable telescopic aluminum handle and, yes,… wireless charging – because USB-C charging is so last year .
Of course, you also get the basics, like a TSA-approved combination lock and 360-turn swivel wheels. Brands even threw in a set of eight packing cubes to keep you organized.
Un-carrier On orders are expected to ship later in November, just in time for your holiday travels.
Opinion: it kind of makes sense
You might be wondering why T-Mobile is making its own suitcase now. While this may be part of the carrier’s campaign to promote its latest Un-carrier move, Coverage beyond (opens in new tab)which offers T-Mobile customers free Wi-Fi throughout flights on major US airlines, plus 5GB of free high-speed data per month and free texting to 215+ destinations worldwide (only for the right programs), it’s actually not as strange as it may seem for a phone provider to get into the travel accessories business.
Our phones and phone plans are just as much a part of travel as other obvious travel accessories. Whether we’re traveling for business or going on vacation, we rely on ours phones to find the best restaurants to try the local cuisine, hail an Uber, check-in for an upcoming flight and even explore an unknown place.
So when you think about it, it makes sense for a mobile phone company to have its own line of travel accessories as well. Not that we’re saying T-Mobile plans to do that. For now, I’m told she has no plans to sell her own travel gadgets beyond this smart luggage.
Never say never, though. I’m already drooling over it, although I’m not sure if the magenta color is for me, as Samsara has become a well-known luggage brand and I’ve admittedly had my eye on their bags for a while now. And, if it proves successful, a matching weekender or suitcase is certainly not out of the question.
To be fair, the Un-carrier On isn’t going to be the best luggage for everyone, not at this price point. However, considering all the features it has – its wireless charging capability is a nice upgrade and the luggage tracking feature means losing your luggage won’t be as much of a headache as before – it sounds like it’s going to be one of the best suitcases around shelves.