Sneaker fans who were lucky enough to get a pair of Nike’s self-lacing HyperAdapt 1.0 sneakers would probably never dream of tearing the shoes apart, but that’s exactly what the engineering team at Mindtribe did.
“By doing so, we were able to see the systems that drive the concept and the possibility for further expansion and functionality — a peek back to the future,” said Mindtribe’s Telind Bench.
The costly sneaker dissection begins at the laces — where else? — with the Mindtribe team finding a combination of Nike’s proprietary Flywire and Flyweave technologies.
From there, the deconstruction continues by removing the insole and cutting into the shoe’s liner, which houses electrical components such as flex PCB circuit and board-to-board connectors.
Inside the shoe lies a metal gearbox, which Mindtribe calls “surprisingly heavy-duty hardware.” According to their tests, the unit is capable of pulling more than 30 pounds before stalling out. “You don’t often see a box that fits in the palm of your hand and can lift three-gallon jugs of milk, with power to spare,” Bench said.
All in all, Mindtribe found that the HyperAdapt 1.0 isn’t without its faults — they criticized its low-cost charging units — but the team was impressed nonetheless. “Every first-gen product has room for improvement, and we commend Nike for leading the charge to a self-lacing future,” Bench said.
The HyperAdapt 1.0 retailed for $720 and was released exclusively via Nike+ app reservations in December. Today, the sneakers sell for as much as $7,500 at consignment shop Stadium Goods.
See the in-depth Nike HyperAdapt 1.0 breakdown here.