GPS-powered trail running shoes may be on the horizon

GTX Corporation may be one step closer to trail running shoes that have integrated GPS directly into the shoes. GPS use has increased in the cycling and running worlds, as it is used to  accurately track time, distance, and speed.  There has been discussion of GPS-enabled running shoes in the past, but nothing significant ever materialized.

The GTX "Ambulator" originally was designed to be used in hospitals and nursing homes, but the technology could be ported into shoes and other products.  The Ambulator shoe is designed to help caretakers better monitor dementia patients who sometimes wander off without anyone knowing.

Pricing for the Ambulator varies between $200 and $300, with customers able to customize some of the features.

GPS technology has evolved from in-car products only to GPS in mobile phones, GPS heart rate monitors, and additional products.  I like the idea of having GPS built directly into the shoes, but hope that the technology isn't overly expensive.  I also wonder how much the monthly monitoring fees will cost, as the Ambulator costs $18 per month to operate.

Many higher-end heart rate monitors designed for athletes include GPS features, but runners occasionally may want to head out without the watch.  However, it's free to use GPS software from Garmin, Polar, and other companies, which could force GTX to lower the price of a monthly GPS subscription.

“Then they pop up and say ‘Hello, surprise! Give us your money or we will shut you down!' Screw them. Seriously, screw them. You can quote me on that.” -- Newegg Chief Legal Officer Lee Cheng referencing patent trolls

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