British-Dutch suitcase-tracking startup FastTrack has announced that it has raised a total of $2.9 million, as well as a partnership with airlines KLM, Air France, Saudi Airlines, and KPN. FastTrack initially pulled in a seed round worth $1.7 million from Mainport Innovation Fund, KPN, and startup management to fund their efforts to develop a prototype of their tracking device and to develop the back-end of the software. Now, they have revealed that they obtained another $1.2 million this month to support their global marketing campaign.
Most of the time that you fly, you can expect that your luggage will also arrive, safe and sound, at the final destination. But, things sometimes go wrong and, while you show up at your destination, the luggage is nowhere to be found. FastTrack started in an effort to provide passengers with some peace of mind, offering a tracking device and electronic tag, which they are calling the Eviate, that allows them to check their bags in while they are still at home and to monitor its status at any point during the journey.
The tracker works by using an RFID chip to transmit to the user’s app, where they can access the platform through an app. As part of the service, the company reports that the tracking device has been designed to conserve batteries during transit (and conforms to global airline regulations), submit a notification to the user immediately if the luggage is lost, and to alert the user when the bag leaves a preset location or been opened. There is also the option of setting up automatic reports on the location of the bag. And then the tags allow users to skip the line by signing in through an electronic barcode. Despite the partnership announced with select airlines, the company that the tracker will work on any flight. They are currently working to expand the list of companies with whom the tag will function.
At the moment, the startup is offering the package for a discounted pre-order price of $104 (or 71 pounds or 99 Euro). In addition to the device, users would be required to purchase a data package, which would set them back $26 (18 pounds or 25 Euro) for 5 flights (as well as return flights) or $51 (35 pounds or 49 Euro) for one year of unlimited flying. Users can also purchase a two-year plan, which costs $79 (54 pounds or 75 Euro). Those looking to pick one up will have to wait awhile, as the company does not anticipate shipping until August. If you end up waiting until then, the devices are expected to retail at $156 (106 pounds or 149 Euro).