The new Aetrex Worldwide Inc. store that opened on East Palisade Ave. in Englewood, New Jersey today features no one resembling the poor Al Bundy character made famous in the old "Married with Children" TV show but instead offers a computer that can measure and assess you shoe needs better than luckless Al could have even on his best day.
Aetrex store features the Aetrex iStep 5000, a piece of hardware which looks like a foot bath, but has thousands of barometric sensors below your feet to assess how your weight is distributed and hundreds of infrared LEDs around your feet to accurately measure them.
The result is data that can create a 2D or 3D image of the pressure points on your feet. This allows the salesperson to fit you with any necessary orthotics while fitting you with the proper shoe. You can have the computer data sent to you via e-mail or straight to your cell phone via text message. The scanning process takes about 30 seconds.
Simms, who was present at a preview and ribbon-cutting event for the press on Thursday, said his Aetrex shoes had eliminated much of the heel pain he used to get from his other size 14 shoes.
Aetrex is marketing its proprietary software and hardware solution to other shoe stores, so you may see one of these setups in your neighborhood sooner than you think.
For a quick demonstration of how the Aetrex iStep 5000 works, see my piece for PC World.