Motorized shoes ready to roll into stores

The "spnKiX" resemble a cross between a ski boot and a roller skate with oversized wheels
Industrial designer Peter Treadway shows off a pair of battery powered high-tech footware at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas on January 11. The shoes can travel at speeds of up to 10 miles per hour.

Tired of walking? An American inventor has designed a pair of motorized shoes.

The battery powered high-tech footware called "spnKiX" resemble a cross between a ski boot and a roller skate with oversized wheels and are among the on display at the (CES) in Las Vegas.

A user straps the motorized on to their and away they go, gliding smoothly along at speeds of up to 10 miles per hour (16 kilometers per hour).

The futuristic shoes are the brainchild of Peter Treadway, a Los Angeles-based industrial designer.

"I've been developing some form of wearable transportation since the 1990s but just in the last, say like eight years, I realized the real necessity for it," Treadway told AFP.

"I was going to lunch one day and couldn't find a place to park," he said. "So I thought 'Why don't I make something that could get me from home to someplace really close by?'

"It's just turned into this fun kind of product."

Treadway said each shoe has a battery and a motor and they are synchronized to work together as "sort of mirrors of each other."

Each shoe has a battery and a motor that are synchronized to work together
The rechargeable battery in the spnKiX allows the wearer to go about two to three miles on a single charge and needs about two to three hours to fully juice up again.

The allows the wearer to go about two to three miles (3-5 kilometers) on a single charge and needs about two to three hours to fully juice up again.

A handheld wireless smaller than a deck of cards controls the speed of shoes.

"It's very simple," Treadway said.

Not everyone finds the shoes easy to use at first, however. Training wheels are provided to take the pain out of the learning process.

"To achieve some proficiency could take you anywhere from a few minutes to a few hours," Treadway said, depending on the individual.

Some of the money for the spnKiX was raised on Kickstarter, a website which collects donations for creative projects.

"We didn't know what we were getting into there," Treadway said. "We're past triple the amount that we asked for. Our funding goal was $25,000. We're now above $80,000.

"People are psyched," he said.

Treadway said the shoes, made by his Los Angeles-based company, Acton Inc., will begin shipping in March and will sell for $649 a pair.

Treadway holds degrees in industrial design, including one from the prestigious Rhode Island School of Design, but he said his interest in fashion contributed to the development of the motorized shoes.

"I also have a little bit of a fashion background," he said. "Which is kind of the reason why these ended up being wearable.

"I see kind of the way that a shoe designer would see a pair of shoes."


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(c) 2012 AFP

Citation: Motorized shoes ready to roll into stores (2012, January 12) retrieved 20 February 2020 from https://phys.org/news/2012-01-motorized-ready.html
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