Mobile is more mainstream than ever – are we even saying smartphone anymore? Some of the more exciting technological innovations – now we have explored every size screen for every type of scenario may not start to come from its blending with the everyday objects around us – like footwear.
These new social football boots from Adidas are about to launch to the general public. They come with their own on board computer that stores data and helps analyse personal performance. As soon as wearers have finished playing, the boots transmit data wirelessly to computer, phone or tablet on speed, distance traveled and top speeds. Professional players will be able to start using the boots from mid-November and from then many of the world’s most celebrated footballers will start sharing their stats with the Adidas community.
GTX Corp in the US have have partnered with footwear company Aetrex to design a shoe specifically targeted at Alzheimer’s sufferers, with a miniature GPS tracking device embedded in the heel. The idea evolved when it became apparent that tracking devices typically used to locate people with Alzheimer’s were being rejected by the wearers, usually because they did not recognize or were suspicious of them. Family members and carers can monitor the wearers of the smart shoe on an interactive map, viewed via their mobile or computer. There is also the option to programme “safe” areas, with a text being sent to a family member or carer if the wearer crosses this boundary.
Taken together one can’t help consider the potential of bringing these two concepts together for the purpose of keeping track of teenage boys. But this, of course, veers rather wildly into the realm of optimally balancing privacy, safety, freedom and compulsive nosiness.