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The smart cross-country ski !

In the winter of 2014/15, Norwegian cross-country specialists Madshus will release the first “smart” XC ski with integrated RFID chip.

With the aid of the chip and with consideration to the weight, size and skiing experience of the potential buyer, dealers will be able to quickly and simply find the perfect ski for a customer. The cross-country skier benefits from the accompanying mobile app – it provides individually tailored waxing tips as well as other information. Madshus calls this unique innovation “empower technology”.
In cross-country skiing there are two big questions:

a) when buying the ski: which is the optimal ski?
b) before skiing: how best to wax the ski?
Madshus’ empower technology helps to answer these questions.
Since 2006, Madshus – the oldest ski manufacturer in the world – uses the Compuflex Machine to measures the skis they produce in Biri, Norway. Compuflex measures the exact camber of a ski depending on the load on the ski (weight of the athlete).


 

 

From winter 2014/15 onwards, Madshus will integrate an RFID chip into the ski (initially in the Redline, Hypersonic and Nanosonic series, all manufactured in Norway). The RFID chip will link to the camber data, which are stored on the Madshus server.
The Retailer
Using the empower Retail Device (which is a tailor-made tablet PC with NFC) the dealer scans the chip of every Madshus ski in their stock via NFC (Near Field Communication). The camber and other data of the ski are collected automatically from the Madshus server.


Then the dealer inputs the biometric data (height, weight) and the cross-country skiing experience of the customer. With this information the system will quickly and reliably select the most suitable ski in stock.
Advantages:
a) The dealer does not necessarily have to be a cross-country specialist and identifying suitable skis is very fast. 
b) The customer gets the ideal skis.
The Athlete
With the Madshus empower app the Norwegian company is going another step further, offering athletes a useful tool for preparing their skis. Modern smartphones can also scan the chip using NFC and can download the individual ski data from the Madshus server. The app then provides the skier with individually tailored waxing advice – depending on experience, height, weight (with or without a rucksack, light or heavy clothing), weather and snow conditions. This includes the length on the waxing zone on classic skis depending on hard wax or klister as well as the weight of the athlete.
Advantage: The skier optimizes his performance and most likely his fun. Additionally the app contains a training logbook, permits the management of the ski quiver (most committed XC skiers have several pairs) or connects the skier to other athletes via social media.
Per Wiik, Marketing Manager of Madshus says: “It was a long and challenging process to develop empower. So we are even more proud of the result. I would dare to suggest that this represents a milestone in cross-country skiing.”

More information at www.madshus.com

 

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