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Letting your insoles speak to your phone

Start-up eSoles is creating insoles with 11 built-in pressure sensors to record your power output, speed and cadence. The data will be sent wirelessly to your cell phone.

Customized insole

It's becoming increasingly difficult to hide from your results while playing sports. The latest self-revealing tool is coming from start-up eSoles.

The Scottsdale, Ariz.-based company says its customized insole will enable your mobile phone to register data such as cadence, power output, balance, speed, and distance while you are cycling, skiing, walking, running, golfing, or jumping rope.

The input comes from 11 pressure sensors integrated into the insole; the data is transmitted to your mobile phone via Bluetooth.

eSoles' self-service kiosk eSoles

The solution is slightly more advanced than products such as the Nike + iPod Sport Kit, which is based on one accelerometer attached to the shoe that gives information on time, distance, calories burned, and pace.

A prototype version of the wireless insole has been tested by athletes and will be available this summer. But most people will have to wait until the second half of 2010, when eSoles expects to have a commercial product ready.

The cost of this little self-spying device is not yet well defined by the company, which indicates possible models from a basic $49 to a presumably luxury version at $499.

Users will also need a smartphone. Initially, phones with Windows Mobile will be supported; applications for the iPhone and BlackBerry are expected to be developed later.

The wireless insoles will be tailor-made, using eSoles' Foot Imaging Kiosk System. The systems consists of self-service kiosks for the sports retail market that contain 3D foot-imaging technology, and of modular insole components.

In the kiosk, customers' feet are analyzed and measured. The output is translated into instructions that enable a retailer to build insoles from modular components to fit the customer' feet and their specific footwear.

There are limits when it comes to beauty, though. On its Web site, eSoles points out: "We do not have a footbed solution for high-heeled shoes yet."