Yesterday it was reported that Apple has hired top Nike design director Ben Shaffer to work on wearable devices. Shaffer was the Studio Director at Nike’s Innovation Kitchen, it was said that his work at the company included Nike’s Flyknit shoes and its Fuelband fitness tracker. A new report by Fast Company states that while Shaffer was indeed the studio director at the Innovation Kitchen, he never worked on the Fuelbands. According to the report, Shaffer’s work at Nike was related to “footwear innovation.”
Apparently the Innovation Kitchen is littered with knitting machines and shoe prototypes, but its not where work on the Fuelband is done. The report claims that Fuelband’s development was lead by the Digital Sport group at Nike, which is said to be in a totally different building than the Innovation Kitchen. This certainly contradicts the earlier report which implied that Shaffer had been poached from Nike due to his experience with wearable devices, particularly those that are fitness focused. The iWatch itself is said to be fitness focused, so it seemed logical for Apple to bring someone in who had worked on a similar device before. No confirmation of Shaffer’s appointment at Apple has been made as yet.