Nike Tests Augmented Reality Shoe-Fitting Technology in Pasadena Store

Published : Friday, May 10, 2019 | 5:03 AM

Pasadena’s Nike store is testing a smartphone-based scanning solution that uses augmented reality (AR) and offers buyers the perfect fit for each shoe style.

The Pasadena store is one of five stores where Nike is now testing Nike Fit, a system that melds the shape of your foot, the materials of the shoe, the lacing or stitching pattern, and personal preference – into the exact size you really are in any shoe the company makes.

The other stores are in Dallas, Texas and in Seattle, Washington, according to a Wired.com report.

“We’ve been doing a lot of experiments and creating new features in our SNKRS app over the last few years where we really learned a lot about how to use augmented reality successfully,” Josh Moore, Nike’s Vice President for design and user experience, told the tech publication. “Specifically, we know we have to guide our users through the journey at their own pace so they can comprehend as they go.”

Moore explained Nike Fit is basically phones with cameras measuring the customer’s feet to find out the right shoe size.

“It’s a new type of experience where you’re using your device, the device’s camera, the 3D space around you, and you’re using your body,” Moore added.

The company said it has been toying with the idea of using AR to improve fit for decades, so they could replace the use of lasts – three-dimensional wooden or plastic molds upon which shoes are constructed.

Nike knew they’d need help, and found it with an Israeli company called Invertex.

Invertex was founded to make custom orthotics, but soon realized it could use machine learning and computer vision to do something much more difficult – getting as much information about your foot using a smartphone camera as a laser 3D scanner could.

Nike acquired Invertex in April 2018, saying only that the startup would “focus on building groundbreaking innovations.”

Invertex, though, was working with Nike’s sports research laboratories to develop the AR technology in shoe fit. After six months, Nike was ready to start testing Nike Fit in the Pasadena, Seattle, and Dallas stores.

Moore told Wired.com they plan to deploy the technology in North America in July, and in Europe by August.

The Pasadena Nike store is located at 37 W. Colorado Boulevard in Old Pasadena.

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