SWORD smartphone case Royal Holdings

  • The SWORD smartphone case promises to scan for weapons and explosives that might be on someone’s person.
  • The case uses audio sound waves as some sort of sonar to detect and identify weapons and explosives.
  • The case is available for pre-order for $950, though the regular price shoots up to $1,250.


Thanks to a string of public attacks in recent years that range from school shootings to suicide bombings, the paranoia that a similar horrific event is right around the corner continues to pervade the public conscious. Whether it can prevent such attacks is debatable, though the SWORD smartphone case is certainly unlike any case we have seen before, reported CNET.

Created by Los Angeles-based startup Royal Holdings, SWORD is supposedly the world’s first mobile 3D imaging scanner that scans for weapons and explosives. You can use the case to scan people, along with their backpacks and handbags, from up to 40 feet away.

As for how it works, the case’s 18 antennas transmit signals toward the person or item. The same antennas receive the signals and create an image profile of what it thinks the person or item might have. SWORD also uses facial recognition technology that uses the phone’s camera to identify people.

While it scans, SWORD cross-references with two databases: one for a user-created watch list, and another for weapons and explosives. That way, you can see if a person is either on a Most Wanted list or a casino’s blacklist.

Whether SWORD works as advertised, however, is a different story. Royal Holdings CEO and former intelligence contractor Barry Oberholzer did not say how effective SWORD is, though early tests showed no false positives.

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Oberholzer also said that Royal Holdings uses AI and machine learning to improve its weapons and explosives database, but there was no mention of what security it uses for the user-created watch lists.

Something like SWORD invites skepticism, but it also invited plenty of interest. According to Oberholzer, Royal Holdings received 8,000 early orders from private security companies, casinos, and “a very large school district.”

The first batch of SWORD smartphone cases arrive in April 2019. At the time of this writing, the Pixel 2 XL is the only compatible Android smartphone.

You can pre-order the case for $950, with the regular price shooting up to $1,250. If you have that sort of scratch, as well as an extra $30 each month for the subscription fee, hit up the link below.