IoT Handbag Vibrates, Auto-Locks To Prevent Compulsive Spending

While a lot of behavioral change will come with the Internet of Things, some people are attempting to cause a bit of that change right away.

In a push to help shoppers save money, a company has created a programmable handbag with built-in robotics that causes the bag to vibrate, flash and self-lock when the shopper enters a ‘danger spending zone.’

The iBag2 (yes, there was an earlier version, which launched in Australia a while back), is the brainchild of the personal finance website in the U.K.

The rather high-tech bag was designed by a New York fashion designer and a team of engineers crafted the robotics features.

In the you-can’t-make-this-stuff-up department, here are the components that comprise the bag:

  • A timer connected to electromagnets that lock the bag via a magnetic field and two steel plates, based on the owner’s most vulnerable spending moments during the course of a day.
  • An RFID system connected to LED lights and vibration motors, which light up and vibrate each time a wallet is taken out as a reminder of spending goals.
  • GPS tracking that triggers LED lights and vibration when the person carrying the bag nears one of the pre-programmed vulnerable spending zones. The lights are on the inside of the bag to provide a visual warning before the bag locks. The mini vibration motors are in the bag’s handle.
  • When entering the ‘danger spending zone,’ the locking function kicks in. The GPS coordinates activate the electromagnets to cause a magnetic field between the two steel plates installed inside the bag's opening. The electromagnets lock the bag until the person enters a safe zone.
  • A reminder every two hours via yellow lights and vibration that it's time to reapply sunscreen.
  • A tracker that helps find a lost bag using Bluetooth technology and a smartphone app.

The idea is for the bag to help consumers take extreme measures to curb their credit card spending.

Consumers may find some of the IoT behavioral changes they face a bit shocking. Literally.

The bag follows an earlier attempt to curb consumer spending by sending an electric shock through a wrist wearable when the IoT bank detects overspending by the consumer.

That device, rather appropriately called Pavlock, first sends a smartphone message when a consumer nears a pre-set spending limit.

When they go over it, they get a zap to the wrist.

Both of these well-intentioned sounding approaches are aimed at saving consumers money.

In the case of the bag, a buyer might hope they save quite a lot over time, since the bag will reportedly cost about $5,000. 





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