From voice-controlled toilets to robots that love a cuddle, the Consumer Electronics Show always throws up a few strange surprises. This year Swedish company Plegium hopes to make headlines with the world’s first smart pepper spray.

Branded as the “world’s most advanced personal safety product” by the company, the Plegium Smart pepper Spray connects to a smartphone via Bluetooth. Whenever the pepper spray is used, the user’s emergency contacts are immediately alerted via an automated phone call. Likewise, a text message is also sent with the user’s current location.

These notifications can be delivered to up to five contacts, which can be assigned via the free Plegium app, which is available via the Apple App Store and Google Play store.

The device is also capable of emitting a siren ringing in at 130dB, which is used to deliver maximum penetration, and is fitted with strobe LEDs that blink up to 19 times-per-second. All of these security features are automatically enabled when the smart pepper spray device is fired.

Plegium’s smart pepper spray holds up to 10 shots, containing maximum strength pepper spray, is effective for up to four years without requiring the battery to be recharged.

“We founded Plegium with a vision to globally eradicate assault,” the company states. “The pepper spray was invented in the ‘70s, and it is still the best non-lethal weapon against assault. But there has been no significant innovation in the pepper spray industry since then. Well… until now.”

Plegium will be showcasing its smart pepper spray at CES 2019 this week. The brand can be found at Sands Expo, Tech West.

Smart devices at CES 2019

Smart devices are continuing to dominate at CES this year, with tech companies unveiling everything from a smart plank of wood to solutions that offer support to an ageing population, from smart speakers to AI avatars.

Despite now being available for a few years, smart doorbells have also been a big hit this year, with new innovations from the Amazon-owned Ring, as well as smaller startups such as Maximus. According to analysts at Futuresource Consulting, the smart security market hit $1bn in value in 2018, with further growth expected.

CES 2019 opened to the public today in Las Vegas, Nevada. The leading consumer technology trade show will run until Friday, 11 January.