Nike is working on an idea to have consumers and fans create or breed new shoes through blockchain technology. When users combine two tokenized shoes on the blockchain through Nike’s own platform, they ‘breed a new shoe offspring’. After that they should be able to order an actual, physical version of the shoe as well. Nike is calling this idea CryptoKicks and just received a patent for it.
The CryptoKicks platform isn’t only about breeding shoes, but also about authentication original Nike products. When consumers buy a shoe, they will also get a corresponding token. The shoe owner needs to link this ERC-721 or ERC-1155 token to a 10-digit shoe identification code. From that point on there are three points of information connected: the shoe to the token, and the token to the consumer.
“Using the digital asset, the buyer is enabled to securely trade or sell the tangible pair of shoes, trade or sell the digital shoe, store the digital shoe in a cryptocurrency wallet or other digital blockchain locker, intermingle or “breed” the digital shoe with another digital shoe to create “shoe offspring,” and, based on rules of acceptable shoe manufacturability, have the newly bred shoe offspring custom made as a new, tangible pair of shoes.”patent – December 10th
How users will be able to breed Nike shoes exactly, isn’t know yet. However, it’s clear that Nike got inspiration from games like Cryptokitties and Axie Infinity. This could mean that users either own two tokens or borrow someone else’s token. It’s also likely that Nike will gamify the shoes, and adds elements of rarity to it. For example, owning certain Nike shoes will make a characters in a certain game run faster, stronger or more agile.
Whether CryptoKicks will actually become a real product, remains to be seen. However Nike already applied for the trademark back in April. With their patent granted eight months later, it’s unlikely they will just let this go.
The first information about CryptoKicks already leaked in April, when Nike filed a trademark application. The trademark application also mentioned a digital token or digital currency for use by members of an online community. So far there’s no mention of a digital currency. However, Cryptokicks will be using Ethereum tokens for its shoes, so perhaps it will use its own digital currency or embrace existing currency as well.
Also published on Medium.