Fed up of having to gaze at a smartphone to navigate your way around a city? Are maps too old hat for your orientation needs? Well my friend your navigation woes may well be answered with a pair a vibrating shoes!
Yes you heard right, this is legit, vibrating shoes!… The Lechal smart shoes with navigation software on your smartphone to direct you via vibrations in your feet. Need to make a left turn… your left shoe vibrates! New restaurant coming up on your right? Vibrate away my friend.
The technology created by the Indian company Ducere Industries is pretty simple but rather effective. The footwear connects to your smart device using Bluetooth and is compatible with iOS, Windows and Android. Simply programme your route into Google maps and instead of visual directions, vibrations take the lead.
The shoes were originally designed to help blind people navigate, replacing a person’s reliance on a cane or aide. As the company began to develop the shoes, the technology advanced and it became apparent its use could be adapted to the navigation world.
Ducere have pledged for every pair of footwear sold, they will be subsidizing one set of Lechals for a visually impaired person.
In addition to serving as personal tour guides, the Lechal shoes are designed to be your workout buddy. They can be used to track health and fitness data, recording calories burned, time and distance walked. Ideal for distance runners or cyclists wanting to lose their clunky GPS or mapping units.
The vibrating footwear is expected to launch September this year, with users able to choose between full shoes or just the insoles, to slip into you old shoes.
The lively kicks are expected to set you back a tidy $150, which is a little steep… but let’s be honest, they are magic shoes!