These Motorized 'Rocket Skates' Are For Real
But what about motorized roller skates? Why not, right? Could be fun.
Thanks to Peter Treadway and his team at Los Angeles-based startup Acton, Inc., that idea has also become a reality. Treadway is crowdfunding his latest project, RocketSkates, on Kickstarter. Essentially, they're motorized wheels that you strap onto your shoes.
Think roller sneakers for kids, but on steroids.
The "skates" have four hub motors built in that are controlled by an on-board microprocessor. Everything is powered by a lithium-ion battery pack. The skates communicate with each other so they maintain the same speed and behavior, the company says.
To start rolling, the wearer simply kicks off, tilting the skates forward to accelerate. Use your heel to tilt the skates backwards to apply the breaks.
There are three models: "Rocket Red," "Terminator Chrome" and "Deep Space Black." Each skate weighs 7 pounds and has a max speed of 12 mph. Battery life can vary from 1-1/2 hours to 2-1/2 hours depending on which model you choose.
RocketSkates also connects to an app that allows people to track their routes, monitor battery life and connect with other "RocketSkators."
The Kickstarter project has blown way past its $50,000 goal, already collecting more than $415,000. There are 15 more days to go before the campaign closes.
Turns out this isn't Treadway's first motorized roller skate creation. In 2010, he launched another Kickstarter campaign for something called spnKiX. That project was successfully funded, having raised $120,000. Looks like RocketSkates is a new and improved version of spnKiX.
And why stop at skating? According to this video, you can strap a camera to a RocketSkate and use it to capture moving video -- from a very low angle, obviously. The app controls the skate like a remote control. Brilliant.