HP Steps Up With 3D Technology to Revolutionize the Footwear Market

FitStation powered by HP delivers individual shoe and insole recommendations, 3D printed insoles and custom footwear

Palo Alto, Calif., Sept. 7, 2017 – HP Inc. today announced FitStation powered by HP, a new platform that will deliver custom-fitted and individualized footwear through innovative 3D scanning, dynamic gait analysis and manufacturing technologies. FitStation is the next step in the company’s journey to reinvent how the world designs and manufactures with commercial 3D technologies.

FitStation powered by HP is an innovative hardware and software platform that captures 3D scans of the foot, foot pressure measurements and gait analysis to create a one-of-a-kind digital profile of each foot. It is the world’s first end-to-end solution that provides individual off-the-shelf shoe and insole recommendations, 3D printed insoles and individualized custom footwear1. The system will use HP Multi Jet Fusion printing technology to manufacture a 3D printed insole.

“FitStation is a truly disruptive platform that will improves people’s lives and change the way people purchase footwear and shoe insoles,” said Louis Kim, Global Head of Immersive Computing, Personal Systems, HP Inc. “We are reinventing the footwear shopping experience, bringing a level of customization and personalization never before seen. We are stitching HP’s capabilities in 3D scanning and 3D printing to bring this Blended Reality vision to life and are working with leading partners within the footwear industry to develop this revolutionary platform.”

FitStation is producing the world’s first 3D printed insoles made using 3D scanning and dynamic gait analysis2, and Superfeet, the leader in innovative, over-the-counter insoles, is piloting the platform in select stores across the 4,000 retail locations where they have a presence. Steitz Secura, the specialist for safety shoes manufactured in Germany, will use FitStation to aid in its focus on comfort, preventative health and safety.

“For 40 years, we have set the standard for shape and fit. Until today, the technology to deliver a 3D printed insole that meets Superfeet’s exacting standards didn’t exist,” said Eric Hayes, Chief Marketing Officer at Superfeet. “Our new solution allows us to create the most individualized shape and fit on the planet.”

“This footwear innovation campaign moves us to the technological forefront of the industry,” said Steitz Secura CEO Michael Huth. “The concept of customized safety shoes is a true world innovation and will be the benchmark for the future.”

About FitStationFitStation is reinventing the in-store retail experience for shoppers with innovative, end-to-end footwear technology that provides precise fit and individualized products, produced locally for unbelievable ease and speed. The digital foot scanning platform allows customers to create a profile, choose to receive personalized off-the-shelf insole and shoe recommendations, fully customized 3D printed insoles, or design their own pair of truly individualized custom footwear3. This unique solution analyzes each foot using a combination of 3D scanning and pressure plate technology to deliver a complete dynamic gait analysis for the individual. FitStation analyzes the data and produces details for custom shoes with polyurethane injected midsoles, that vary in density based on the customer’s needs.

With FitStation’s 3D scanning capabilities, it collects the customer’s foot length, width, and volumetric data and compares that to the available shoes to determine the most ideal fit. FitStation also provides off-the-shelf insole recommendations, for added support within shoes.

Consumers are not the only ones who will benefit. This new technology has the potential to revolutionize the footwear industry by disrupting the usual supply chain. FitStation enables local on-time manufacturing, allowing retailers to sell products they don’t have to keep in inventory. With FitStation, retailers can anticipate fewer product returns by providing customers with proper fitting shoes, based on comfort and function.

by Phil Baker