One can always tell tourists in a city. They are the people with their heads in a map, trying to figure out which direction to walk next to get to a destination. Wouldn’t it be nice to automatically have your feet take you to a desired location – without consulting a map?
A new product from EasyJet, UK’s budget airline, does just that with a new product called Sneakairs. Sneakairs are smart shoes that know where the wearer is heading, and vibrate to tell which direction to turn. No map. No guidebooks. Just shoes and a smart phone.
The shoes use a battery and a mini Bluetooth unit that fits into the sole of each shoe. Once the shoes know the destination via Google Maps, they vibrate to tell the wearer which direction to turn. Different vibrations indicate the direction – left foot buzz means turn left, right foot buzz means turn right, both shoes buzzing at the same time means you are off the path, and three buzzes indicate that you have reached your destination. If you stop for coffee unexpectedly, don’t worry – the app will automatically reroute to keep you on track.
Go ahead – explore a new city!
Group Activities and Discussion Questions:
- Discuss the difficulties of traveling and navigating in a strange city. Ask students what they do when traveling somewhere new.
- View Sneakairs Web site:
- Divide students into teams. Have each team design a new product that will help travelers.
- Determine the marketing mix, including target market, price, and distribution.