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Robotics Company Unveil ‘World’s Fastest Shoe’ that Boosts Walking Speed by 250%


Whatever happened to life’s simple pleasures? Reading has been replaced by audiobooks, talking has been replaced by texting and now the most basic of human actions, walking, is the latest causality in this technological revolution. US-based robotics and engineering company Shift has just unveiled its battery-powered sneakers – the Moonwalkers. These Skechers on steroids claim to be the “world’s fastest shoe”, boosting walking speeds up to 250%. However, we suspect they also increase fellow pedestrians’ eye-rolls by an estimated 1000%…

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The Moonwalkers Shift Robotics

Image: Shift Robotics

So how exactly do these ‘foot segways’ actually work? The Moonwalkers’ use artificial intelligence to measure your gait and react to how you walk, reaching a top speed of 12km/h in a matter of seconds. Powered by a state-of-the-art DC motor, they’ve installed eight polyurethane wheels that can tackle all sorts of rough terrain, including cracked sidewalks and gravel. The current edition can be fully charged by USB-C in 1.5 hours and have a range of six miles.

The shoes have two modes: lock and shift – and they only move as you do. This means users can effortlessly navigate stairs, mass transit and crosswalks as the AI switches modes using an algorithm to adapt to your walking patterns and environment. The shoes also have a hinge system that allows your foot to naturally bend at your toes, preserving your natural walking patterns, balance and mobility.

The Moonwalkers Shift Robotics

Image: Shift Robotics

Shift founder Xunji Zhang came up with the idea following a near-death experience while commuting to work. Once he graduated from Carnegie Mellon’s Robotics Institutes, Xunjie linked up with a group of race-car engineers, roboticists and sneaker designers to achieve one goal – place everything you find in an electric vehicle into a shoe so that you can effortlessly walk at a running speed.

Since launching its Kickstarter campaign three days ago, the company has raised AU$256,261 (more than $100,000 over its initial goal). Lazy individuals (kidding) can back the project for USD$1,099 (AU$1,714) and can expect delivery around April 2023. Unfortunately, the Moonwalkers will only come in one size, best fitting men between sizes nine and 12, and women between 10.5 and 13.

Check it out

The Moonwalkers Shift Robotics

Image: Shift Robotics

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