Don’t call ‘em skates, because they’re Moonwalkers

It is a fact discovered by Scientific American and popularized by Steve Jobs that a man riding a bicycle is the most efficient animal on earth. Shift Robotics, a startup out of Carnegie Mellon, hopes to disrupt that wisdom with its Moonwalkers shoes, which have internal wheels that speed up a person’s gait. The company was shaken CES 2024 For us to play with the existing Moonwalkers in Las Vegas and its new model, Moonwalkers X.

In fact, these are shoes that spin their wheels when your foot hits the ground and push you forward a little. Each step offers only a small extra distance, but the cumulative effect can make your journey up to three times faster. The battery should give you about 7 miles of range, after which you’ll need to grab the USB-C cable and wait 1.5 hours for it to recharge. If you want to own a pair for yourself, you’ll need it raise $1,399 for the privilege.

Now, as the original model was designed for use on US pavements, this may not be its ideal environment. That’s why the company developed the Moonwalkers Xi, which shaves a pound off the weight and reduces the number of wheels. Instead, it’s intended for warehouse and logistics workers who spend hours walking around smooth concrete floors. In industrial environments where fashion concerns are less common, it seems like an ideal way to speed up transit while reducing fatigue. Unfortunately, they don’t have a price yet, but we’ll know more before their release date in the middle of this year.

We’re reporting live from CES 2024 in Las Vegas, January 6-12. Stay up to date with the latest news from the show here.

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