Meet Smash, the world's first responsive coaching wearable for tennis. Read more
This project's funding goal was not reached on July 10, 2014.
About this project
Having a consistent game feels great, we built Smash to help players everywhere feel like that more often.
Smash is a lightweight wristband combined with an app that provides easy access to technique analysis and personalised recommendations.
Designed for players of all ability
Smash is for everyone. Whether you’re hitting with friends, practising drills, playing matches or a young player on the way-up, Smash gives you insights and tips to keep you on the right track.
The Smash app is genuinely helpful, like having a coach with you every time you play.
See how consistent all of your strokes are, and what you need to work on:
Learn how to improve your technique, like generating topspin:
You can focus your practice by setting goals, then track your improvement over time:
Keep it up! Stay motivated with a timeline of achievements and personal bests:
You can experience all this because Smash is packed with processing power
From forehand through to volley, the details of your strokes are captured and analysed hundreds of times every second by the onboard sensors. Smash measures:
- Number and type of shots.
- Racket head speed.
- Racket head momentum.
- Amount of spin.
- Wrist rotation.
- Stroke trajectory.
- Impact point consistency.
- Technique consistency.
Smash is a beautiful, functional piece of wearable technology.
Our goal was to create a wearable device that was simple, lightweight and unobtrusive, crafted from materials that could stand up to the rigours of playing tennis.
We’re so proud of where we’ve ended up. Smash blends form, function and more than a dash of good looks.
We started with a circuit board that contained the type of sensors we thought were needed, and a battery. This was used for initial feasibility testing by strapping it to my wrist with tape.
We quickly moved on to identifying which particular components we needed for Smash and how they could all fit, along with a battery, Bluetooth and LED, into a wristband.
This was no mean feat as fit was important too, the wristband had to be snug on the wrist, and not get in the way of the important business of playing tennis.
This led to a lot of CAD modelling and discussions on materials, flexible circuit boards and very exciting curved batteries.
Finally, having answered all the questions we worked up the prototype.
6-8 hours of playing time.
3 sizes available S, M, L.
Flexible and breathable wristband.
LED for status and notifications.
Width 27mm, Thickness 6.5mm (At tallest point).
- Weighs less than 15g.
Want to use the API for other sports? You can!
We’re planning to open up an API to developers. There’s going to be a truckload of data, and whilst we have our own visions of where Smash can go, we wouldn’t want to restrict others from creating greatness.
We're also working on a simple developer kit so you can try out some of the Smash features with other sports.
Here are the wonderful people that have been involved in bringing Smash to life. Other than being in love with the product too, they bring years of experience and the skills required to move Smash from a prototype to a commercial product.
Here’s what we’ve completed so far, and what your pledges will help us achieve.
Choose your pledge and help us hit our goal
Why I made Smash...
I started playing tennis a few years ago - I was pretty much hooked straight away! Staying in a rally, serving an ace, hitting a passing shot, I’ve always loved the feeling that gives you, so I started to think of ways for it to happen more often. I have a background in Physics, a career spent in digital and a love of tennis, it was this intersection that led to the idea of Smash...it sometimes feels there's nothing else I could have made.
I’ve tried to focus on making the experience simple and useful. You put the band on and play, Smash will crunch the data, leaving you to concentrate on crunching the forehands. You can sync with your phone whenever you like, and take a look at actual insights...not just a load of graphs.
I’ve been pouring my heart and soul into Smash for the past 18 months, but I haven’t been alone. Like me, the group of people involved are passionate about transforming the way people learn about their game, and giving them the tools to play more consistently.
For this to happen, we need your support. We know how to make one of these, now we’d love the chance to make a lot of them. I’m hoping you’ll join us.
Our wonderful partners
In particular, huge thanks go to: Troy Nyssen and the team at Katapult Design, all the staff at Cogent and Procept, the guys I have a hit with on Sundays. Dan Norris and the team at Albert Park Reserve. Thanks to Commoner films and Owl Ventures too. Special mention to x-io technologies for the early sensor array and circuit, every home should have one!
Smash in the press
Risks and challenges
Smash needs to draw together expertise in tennis technique, sensor technology, software and industrial design, not to mention manufacturing and supply. I set out early to build these relationships, to answer the tough questions and give us confidence in where the product was going and how we were going to build it.
The teams we have partnered with have many years of operational experience with this technology and type of materials, giving a high level of confidence that Smash is in some very safe, and capable hands.
A few specifics:
Smash needs to be a device strong enough to handle wear for hours at a time. The product has been designed to meet will undergo some severe treatment (forces, weather, body oils and sweat, impact etc.) We'll also focus on maximising ingress protection to avoid moisture and dust ingress getting into the unit.
Tooling & production:
We'll be putting in place production test systems to provide quality assurance during manufacture. This applies to the electronic components and the fully assembled products.
We will be carrying out extensive user testing on Smash. We have a period of time set aside to iron out any bugs, plus a set of Alpha testers to give us real player feedback.
The wristband is only half the story, the other half is the app experience. Getting this out in the field is an important part of our project timeline and we've set aside two solid months for testing and implementing user feedback.
Change happens, and we have a healthy attitude towards it. We'll be open and transparent about the potential impacts and any trade off's which need to happen. We'll communicate with you regularly, so you know exactly what's going on.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
At this stage Smash can only be used for tennis. We've worked hard to develop detailed technique algorithms and a user experience which is helpful for tennis. We'd need to put the same effort into other sports to do them justice, which we do plan to do in the future. Saying that, your feedback got us thinking about the API...
Yes there will be. Initially we were planning to open up the data to see what interesting things people could do with it. However, the feedback has been overwhelming that some kind of developer kit would be great so people can try Smash with other sports. We're working on what this can look like and will post more news shortly.
Kickstarter doesn't allow for multiple quantities per backer. However, if you increase your pledge by the number of devices you'd like, I'll know how many you've ordered. For example, a pledge of $258 would be 2 devices from the Early Bird pledge tier, $598 would be 2 from the Alpha Tester tier, and so on.
We will respond to everyone with confirmation on the number of devices we've recorded for you.
- (45 days)