Self-Driving Luggage Just Followed Me Around at CES 2018

LAS VEGAS - It's a little bit cute and a little bit creepy. And it will definitely turn heads at the airport. At CES 2018, I test drove the most advanced luggage I've ever seen.

The CX-1 from ForwardX robotics is the "world's first self-driving carry-on," and it features a combination of facial recognition, auto-follow capabilities and object avoidance to keep your hands free while you're walking through the terminal.

After a very quick training session, which involved little more than staring into the robot's face, this little bot had no problem following behind me as I strolled around a large room inside the Mandalay Bay Hotel. The lidar comes in handy for real-time positioning.

However, the CX-1 temporarily lost sight of me when I purposely made an abrupt turn, as its camera is limited to 170 degrees.

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Worried about someone taking your luggage? The CX-1 comes with a small anti-theft wristband that will receive an alarm signal if the CX-1 gets out of range.

With a max speed of up to 7 miles per hour, this piece of high-tech luggage offers up to four hours of battery life on a charge, and it can also juice your gadgets using a built-in mobile charger. The company says the battery is removable, if you're concerned about airlines cracking down on checking anything with Lithium-ion batteries.

The CX-1 is so new that reps from ForwardX Robotics told me that the name could change between now and when the product launches in the U.S., which could be as early as this summer. The company also isn't ready to provide a price range.

Overall, the CX-1 very much looks and feels like the concept that it is, but it's also the type of fun surprise that reminds me why I come to CES.

Credit: Mark Spoonauer/Tom's Guide

Mark Spoonauer

Mark Spoonauer is the global editor in chief of Tom's Guide and has covered technology for over 20 years. In addition to overseeing the direction of Tom's Guide, Mark specializes in covering all things mobile, having reviewed dozens of smartphones and other gadgets. He has spoken at key industry events and appears regularly on TV to discuss the latest trends, including Cheddar, Fox Business and other outlets. Mark was previously editor in chief of Laptop Mag, and his work has appeared in Wired, Popular Science and Inc. Follow him on Twitter at @mspoonauer.