Meet the Digitsole smart shoe. According to its designers, it’s the first of its kind on the market and is more “smarter, healthier, and convenient” than a standard shoe. But given that this shoe looks more like Robocop’s boots for a Saturday night, I’m unsure if the market really needs a smart than smart trainer.
Digitsole smart shoe
The smart shoe has been designed by Digitsole, a company from France pioneering connected footwear. It’s an interactive trainer that is constantly evaluating and providing the user with personalised feedback, including how you walk, your posture and calories burnt.
The company are currently crowdfunding for its launch on Kickstarter. Take a look:
The shoe itself does has several useful features. It evaluates how the user walks, and tracks data on impact force and strike pattern. This enables the user to get a better understanding of their posture and introduce methods to correct or adjust it. Likewise, a pretty cool feature is the step count. Using this feature the shoe can calculate if you need to walk faster to make a meeting on time. It even tells you by sending a message to your smartphone.
Smart shoes. Really?
The shoe has already received a lot of praise in the technology market. In 2017, it won the Biotechnology and Sports fitness award at the CES show in Las Vegas. In the same month, the company also won the Best European Startup award at Start Up World Cup 2017.
But there are many features I just can’t get on board with. The auto tightening features seems unnecessary and makes the shoe appear clunky. Likewise, each shoe is powered by a rechargeable battery. While the battery can last for several weeks, if you utilise the built-in heating system, it’s expected to last between five and eight hours before you must recharge it. This seems an incredible waste of energy, given that a pair of thicker socks could do the job.
The smart shoe is an example how technology is taking over the market. Everything is becoming more intelligent, more capable, more advanced. But is that necessarily a good thing? I can understand some of the benefits of this shoe. More people need to address their posture and correct it for later life. But this shoe can only track it, it doesn’t physically change it for me.
Likewise given it’s RRP $599 (£464) I’m wondering who would actually consider the investment worth it?