The company Brooks Running planning to rollout personalized running footwear in June. They are working on a partnership with HP Inc. and Superfeet who leverages 3D printing technology to produce customized footwear. The companies will combine Superfeet’s FitStation and Brooks Run Signature to make shoes based on an individual customer’s biomechanics. Shoes will be manufactured at Superfeet’s corporate headquarters in Ferndale, Washington. With 3D printing, Brooks is just months away from being part of the athletic shoe market leaders Adidas, Nike and Under Armour. Those companies have been looking into 3D printing technology for shoes for quite a while now. Currently, Adidas is leading the industry, but the whole thing is still very early.
None of the brands are into very wide production yet with 3D printed designs so this part of the shoe market remains open. This is why 3DShoes.com is sticking with it to see where it goes. 3D foot scanning is not new, nor is the concept of using it to manufacture shoes for a market of one. Major shoe brands are looking into this kind of technology and even start-ups are gaining attention for their innovations in this realm. Competition is very existent in the athletic shoe market, and players aren’t showing worry about spending resources to invest in technology that they feel might give them an edge. With 3D printing in general and other shoe innovations, the use of custom-fit technology may move only in small increments towards the mass market.