Tennis racquets have been more or less the same for a long time. But here we have a futuristic tennis racquet designed by AI!
Sometimes you wonder how tennis racquets will look and play in the future. Because in the topic of racquets, we generally see smaller, incremental upgrades and nothing major. But this futuristic tennis racquet designed by AI, called Hìtëkw, is a little different.
It’s created by All Design Lab using a combination of DALL.E/Midjourney along with generative algorithms. It sure looks pretty interesting, but according to the team, it will also be lighter yet stronger.
“From the start of the project, we wanted to explore new opportunities. We wanted to create something exciting to tell a new story within this sport”, said the spokesperson from All Design Lab (check out their Instagram here). The designers asked artificial intelligence (AI) to reimagine tennis racquets in its own way.
What is going on at the throat?
The racquet looks fairly standard at first look, except for the Alien-style tree-branch design of the racquet throat. The design makes the racquet impossible to make using the traditional casting/molding techniques and requires 3D printing. On the other hand, it would be interesting to see where artificial intelligence and 3D printing can take racquets in the future.
Is this racquet playable? No idea. Being made through metal 3D printing, it might play more like a Wilson T2000 or an aluminum frame, which is not the best. But it’s nice to have people from other walks of life and industries use their design skills and modern technology to reimagine tennis racquets. Although it’s just a fun project for now, maybe they will strike gold at some point.
But how much can you innovate tennis racquets? Stable and light are essential, but mass (swing weight) creates power, and you’re always trying to balance that fine line of power/spin/control/feel/comfort. In the end, racquets are so personal that even if you design a “perfect” racquet, far from everyone would like to play with it due to different styles, needs for power, feel, etc.
How do you think future tennis racquets will look and play?