VR at Nike Town

Sam, our Motion Graphics Designer, tries out Nike Town’s hottest new experience

We headed down to the Nike Town Regent Street flagship to try out the brand’s HyperAdapt 1.0 Experience. A first for the company, it’s the only place in the world where customers can buy or try out the brand’s self-lacing shoes.

The experience began seated in a plush Eames chair with a VR headset that transported us to a room with Tinker Hatfield, the designer of HyperAdapt 1.0. He introduced the self-lacing trainer and explained how the model had evolved, from a mind-boggling idea in ‘Back to The Future’ to its current, useable form.

The VR experience was a nice touch, however Nike could have used the opportunity to expand on the product in a more exciting way. Since the most fascinating aspect of the trainer is the technology, why not explore this in the VR experience? Seeing a 3D trainer being pulled apart would have been more informative, not to mention more visually exciting than Hatfield’s presentation.

Once the VR experience had ended we were each presented with a pair of HyperAdapt 1.0 trainers to try on. We stood on the illuminated runway, surrounded by infinity mirrors and the shoes automatically fitted to our feet. The sensation of the self-lacing shoe, combined with the light blue neon lights glowing around the room, made the experience feel more like a scene from TRON than a UK high street.

Knowing that this experience was exclusive to this location made it feel premium, and we left feeling like we’d had a glimpse into the future. Getting to try on the trainers made their £650 price tag seem more accessible, although I’m going to have to start a Go Fund Me before I can purchase my own!
The VR experience was less effective than trying on the shoes in person and the transition between the two experiences could have been slicker. Ultimately, AR integrates into a store environment experience more seamlessly than VR. Nevertheless to tell a compelling and unique story differently than competitors, a fluid integration of VR into a retail environment can certainly give an edge.

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