Disclaimer Alert! You should know that despite their name, the skates are not actually rocket powered. Let this not bring you down because rocket skates are powered by electric motors and hence unlike rockets, they will give you optimum speed control.
RocketSkates were launched by a Los-Angeles based startup Acton. They are a pair of small skates which you can strap on any of your normal shoes. The electric skates are remote-free and you simply put a foot forward to turn the both skates on. This foot becomes the ‘lead’. The two skates wirelessly link with each other. The user can now accelerate by tilting the lead foot forward and can decelerate by pulling it back. The other skate follows whatever the lead skate does. So, to get the wheels rolling, all you have to do is, take a few steps and then, the motors take over.
The skates have been designed in a way that the wearer can still walk. The wheels are placed near the center of foot leaving the toes free. So, you can still tip-toe to climb stairs and jump over that sewerage grate.
Another astounding feature of the skates’ is the app it connects with. The app is available on both android and iOS. It gives information about the battery life, mileage and the distance travelled. You can also use the app to control the lead skate to get the fun of an RC car.
ACTON posted this project on Kickstarter on July 8, 2014 and within 24hrs they sold all 125 pairs of electric skates going past their target of $50,000 with 43 days of pledges remaining. Spnkix was the company’s previous effort at a pair of motorized skates a couple of years ago- that too through kickstarter. The reviews received were mixed. Where Spnkix was controlled via remote, Rocketskates are completely hands-free. They are also 15 percent lighter and faster.
Acton’s transportation designer, Jennifer Choy, said about the skates’ unusual design that “The hexagon is represented in our brand, from our logo to our products … The ‘throttle’-like shape of a rocket converges to the logo. The button lighting up is meant to serve as an ‘electric’ flame.” She added, “the RocketSkates is meant to invoke the feeling of a futuristic, industrial vehicle.”
Currently the company has three models on the shelves. RS-6 has a 45 minutes charging capacity, the RS-8 will take 60 minutes before the need to re-charge and RS-10 will get you full 90 minutes. The prices increase with the charging time. The maximum speed is 19kmph which also varies with price.
The gadget can be seen in action here: