In order to combat rival Adapt BB, the automated sneaker launched by Nike, sportswear brand Puma is set to launch auto-lacing Fit Intelligence (Fi) shoes, its most recent technological innovation.
The first Fi style is a low-top designed for workouts and light running. Its main feature is a micromotor placed on the tongue. The Puma FI shoe doesn’t automatically tighten like the Adapt BB. Instead it this motor on the boot’s tongue that tightens the shoe’s hidden laces. In order to give every wearer their own personalized experience, the smart lacing setup will mould uniquely to the user’s foot.
Like Nike’s Adapt BB basketball sneaker, the fit will also be able to be adjusted through an accompanying smartphone app.
The motorized sneaker won’t be available until spring next year but the German sportswear brand is offering fans the chance to beta test it.
“We’re on the ten-yard line. The product is working, we’ve got it functional but we really want to have some additional learning before we bring it to market.” – Sayid Charles Johnson, Global Director, Innovation, Puma
The shoe will have a battery based under its sole that can be charged through a wireless charging dock or by swapping out the batteries. These batteries would last about a week with normal use.
The Fi shoes are connected to its app which enables the laces to be tightened or loosened with the swipe of a finger. It currently only works with an Apple iPhone or Apple Watch, but will soon be available on Android phones too.
The Fi sneakers will retail for US $ 330, a little lesser than Nike’s Adapt BB which will cost US $ 350 when that comes to market in February.