The increasing frequency of crimes against children has caused the birth of yet another high-tech product.
Tokyo-based bag maker Kyowa Corp., cooperating with leading security firm Secom Co., began selling school bags with built-in global positioning devices Monday.
Kyowa said it decided to market the high-tech bags — believed to be first of their kind in the world — to meet a demand from parents concerned about the growing number of crimes and accidents involving schoolchildren.
In the event a loved one does not arrive home on time, parents can hopefully pinpoint the child’s location with Secom’s system, which includes a Web site map, the bag maker said.
The system tracks the location of the school bag, called Olivier Navirand, using satellite and mobile phone waves, according to Kyowa.
Secom security guards can also be sent to the bag’s location in an emergency.
Kyowa said it hopes to sell 10,000 GPS-embedded school bags by next spring, mainly through its retail outlets.
The bags will be priced at 33,000 yen for artificial leather and 45,000 yen for real leather and there will be a monthly fee of 525 yen for Secom’s services, Kyowa said.
School bag sales have been falling in recent years due to the declining number of children.
Kyowa introduced school bags equipped with an alarm button last year and they were a hit.
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