Kickstroid, “The Smartest Sneaker App Ever”, Teaches You All About The Footwear Hype


What makes a sneakerhead a sneakerhead?

Is this a collection of Off-White and Yeezy? a love for custom Air Force 1s; or just one pair of beaten Jordans?

For David Alston and Nicco Adams, the answer is all of the above. The huge range of sneakers – and the people who love them – is why they created their app. Kickstroid, which makes sneakers “for everyone”, they said Grab in an interview. “Being a sneakerhead doesn’t mean you’re going right after the Travis Scott [shoes]”Said Alston.” It’s the love of sneakers entirely …. You just have to be part of the culture in a way that you feel comfortable with.

For culture

Nicco Adams and David AlstonApple

No matter what (or how many) pairs you own, Kickstroid helps sneakerheads connect with the culture. Within the app, users can read news from the entire sneaker community, stay up to date with upcoming drops, and vote who has the best shoes through sneaker battles. Billed as “the smartest sneaker app ever,” Kickstroid also uses machine learning to identify sneakers by brand and model, estimate a shoe’s resale value, and create a preference profile. “For You” which allows users to discover new sneakers – hype or not.

“People were missing insight and approach [to the sneaker community]. They are Ryan reynolds, but without the free guy eyeglasses. “

Adams explains that he and Alston met while studying at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. “We met through a mutual friend and continued to see each other on campus,” he says, noting that every time they log on, they check each other’s sneakers. Adams, who has claimed to be a shoe enthusiast since he was around 12, says his knowledge of sneaker culture dovetailed well with Alston’s technical skills and passion for sneakers. Together, they decided to create an app “by culture, for culture,” says Alston.

Donald Glover’s 2019 partnership with Adidas was one of the inspirations behind Kickstroid, Alston notes. He and Adams are both fans of Childish Gambino, and witnessing the artist’s fan community in the sneaker world made the duo realize that “so many people are passionate about sneakers. and just don’t know it yet, ”says Alston. Film SEO free guy, in which Ryan Reynolds’ character discovers his life is a video game once he dons a pair of sunglasses, Alston adds, “People lacked insight and approach. [to the sneaker community]. They are Ryan Reynolds, but without the free guy eyeglasses.”

Adidas x Donald GloverGQ

Kickstroid gives the sneaker community a better view: “We call Kickstroid the ultimate tool for sneaker enthusiasts,” says Alston. “He uses AI to come up with price predictions [on the resale market], metrics on sneaker culture and battles, which together help people understand and see the sneaker community in a whole new way. The app helps fellow enthusiasts get used to the culture, bond, and learn more about the type of shoes they like. Especially with the pandemic restricting social interactions to social media and other online platforms, there is a desire for community that has not been met.

“Right now, being a sneakerhead makes it feel like it’s all about access,” Alston says, citing the hoops consumers have to go through – and know about in the first place – to score a pair of shoes. With lottery draws, bots, delivery issues, and insane resale prizes restricting access to sneakers, it’s easy for enthusiasts to feel isolated; but “that should never stop someone from feeling like they’re not a sneaker enthusiast,” Alston says. The sneaker community has an interest in “democratizing” the definition of what a sneakerhead is, he adds, by making the space more inclusive and welcoming to everyone.

For everyone

Christian Vierig / Getty Images Entertainment / Getty Images

“Nicco and I first bonded through Telfar,” Alston recalls, although neither of them owned any of the brand’s products. On the contrary, the label’s message – it’s not for you, it’s for everyone – sparked a conversation between the two. “The sneaker culture is so ingrained in black culture and black vision,” says Alston, pointing to faces like Kanye West and Virgil Abloh. “Yet a lot of people on the technical side [of the sneaker industry] does not look like us.

“His important To give back and keep help others.

The duo showcased the app at Apple’s first Entrepreneur Camp for Black Founders and Developers in early 2021, which they describe as a transformative experience. “Almost all of our machine learning comes from Apple,” says Alston. “They took us from fighting with sticks to fighting with Excalibur.”

Apple’s camp connected Alston and Adams with business mentors and tech experts, both of whom have “brought [Kickstroid] to the next level, ”Adams says. But meeting other black entrepreneurs in the program was “a blessing,” Alston adds. “One of the hardest things about being a tech entrepreneur is finding a support network of people like us,” he says. There is a certain level of understanding among black entrepreneurs as they delve into a predominantly white tech industry.

With Kickstroid, Alston says he and Adams want to make sure that the kindness and generosity shown to them doesn’t end with them. “Part of access is knowledge,” he adds, saying everything the duo learn is passed on to their community of black entrepreneurs. “We had opportunities that few people like us have,” says Adams. “It’s important to give back and continue to help others. “

Alston and Adams are making tech and sneaker spaces more accessible, bringing knowledge where it’s needed. As they set out in the hopes of creating the smartest sneaker app ever, they found themselves with a community, which is really the essence of the sneaker space. Culture wouldn’t be what it is today without the people who wear and love shoes, and Kickstroid brings them together.

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