So, you may be wondering, “What is a Smart Shoe”, a very good question, and what is it that makes it “smart”.
We have smart phones, smart TV’s and smart watches, right, so why not smart shoes ?
Wikipedia defines “Smart shoe technology” as footwear that adopts smartphone applications to support tasks that cannot be accomplished with traditional footwear. WOW, really, now I am intrigued. Tell me more….
“Smart Shoes” have also been known as “Lechal Shoes”, meaning ‘take me along’, and have been described as interactive footwear. Interestingly enough, Smart Shoes For Women were first introduced in India way back in 2014.
So, How Do They Work.
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The “brains” of a Smart Shoe are actually in the interactive insole. LIke a lot of other devices you may be familiar with, the Smart Shoe connects to your smartphone via bluetooth. Typically utilizing satellite navigation systems, an accelerator, gyroscope and magnetometer used for global positioning and the analysis of gate.
They can track and evaluate your movements as you walk, displaying the steps you take, calories burned as well as all kinds of other health related data. Monitoring our health has become very popular among all age groups in todays society. They also have the ability to tighten shoelaces, REALLY, yes, of course just like in the old movie “Back to the Future”. The technology is pretty amazing alright. These Smart Shoes can provide you with ALL of your health metrics.
They have multiple sensors in the sole that will monitor pressure, temperature, your location on the map, your pace, your stride and posture. They will vibrate telling you which way to turn and when you arrive at your chosen destination, something that can be very useful to someone with sight impairment. Your Smart Shoe will transmit all of this data to your smartphone.
Extra Sensory Perception – ESP
Some manufacturers have designed and created special Smart Shoes for the construction trade. They have safety insoles that have the usual sensors onboard adding a feature that will alert a supervisor if you should slip or take a fall, etc.
Special interactive footwear has been designed for the visually impaired with navigation systems built in.
Leading The Way
The following companies are leading the way in the design and manufacture of Smart Shoes.
NIKE , as you know, are very well known for their innovations in the development of footwear and Smart Shoes are no exception. They have already developed a self-lacing shoe. This shoe will also send you an alert if the fit is too tight or should your battery be low. Like many of todays fitness trackers, this shoe will only need charging every 2 weeks or so.
UNDER ARMOR, another well known manufacturer of sports footwear have entered the Smart Shoe market with their Phantom series. The built in sensors will record the usual data for runners. They can of course easily be synced to the running app on your smartphone. These shoes have been designed with excellent cushioning properties giving the wearer a kind of ‘floating’ experience.
DIGITSOLE, is a very light shoe which also provides the wearer with automatic lacing technology, temperature control, and of course all the other usual features proviced by most manufacturers.
XIAOMI, a major designer of Smart Shoes, have built a shoe with several chips onboard providing the usual health related metrics with the added ability to detect the wearers speed, hours slept and weight. They also have a very long battery life and can synchronize data with your smartwatch by simply shaking them, wowzers…
ALTRA TORIN IQ, are ultra thin and lightweight with data being provided for each foot separately. The sensors can provide audible coaching including distance travelled, your impact with the ground, your pace and cadence.
What About The Cost
A pair of Nike Smart Shoes will cost around 350.00 a pair with the autolacing tecnology.
Xiaomi a little less than 3,000.00 , Under Armor sell for about 140.00, Digitsole can be purchased for about 600.00.
Altra Torin IQ on the market at 220.00 a pair.
So, as you can see, the price range is fairly wide depending on the brand you select. There are of course subtle differences between them, however, the basic sensors are all performing similar functions.
The future for Smart Shoes For Women is very bright indeed, although, make no mistake, an incredible investment is required as well as the technical knowhow to continue the research & development necessary to bring the latest and greatest to market
Market analysts are forcasting ‘progressive growth’ thru 2022. New players like Adidas and Salamon are now conducting tests on shoes with custom biomechanics. Biologic smart shoes are also being developed, capable of actually sensing how we feel, then being able to adapt to the person wearing them.
Tech companies like Garmin, Sensoria and E-Vone are developing innovations that will in large part determine the innovations we will see in smart shoes in the future. There is some talk about being able to generate electricity, actually charging your smart shoes batteries as you walk, and so much more.
Yes, we are going to see a lot more innovative technology being incorporated into our footwear going forward.
We would love to hear your comments about ‘smart shoes’. Do you have a pair, are you considering purchasing some, do you feel they are a waste of money, or a good investment. Please leave your remarks in the comment box below.
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