This month I attended my second ever demo night hosted by the London TechHub. I wrote about my first experience over on the Nuu blog.
The goal of the event isn’t for the folk on stage to try and get funding from anyone or pitch to people, the goal is to demo what they've been working on. This makes for way less spammy "pitches" and a more relaxed atmosphere.
There were eight companies demoing at this months event, I want to talk about each of them in turn.
We started off the evening with a live demo from a company who hopes to gamify the act of brushing your teeth by way of an attachment you put onto your toothbrush and a game running on your smart phone.
They appear to have done their research and it is definitely a novel idea.
I am clearly not the target market as I don't have kids and have no issues brushing my teeth. Maybe you are a parent? Would this be something that would interest you?
The official blurb for Play Brush is;
Playbrush is a London-based tech startup making brushing teeth fun. We are developing a smart hardware gadget, which transforms conventional toothbrushes into gaming controllers - so kids & young-at-hearts can play fun & instructional mobile games while brushing.
You sign up and receive a kit, you take small blood samples and send it off and they post the results up on their website.
I was initially excited by the product when I thought it was a one off cost for something you could have at home, but they did a good job of explaining why it is more reliable to have an actual lab doing the analysis.
I think this is a company to keep your eye on.
The official Hemavault blurb;
If you think something is amiss with your diet, Hemavault will analyse your blood and offer nutritional advice based on a range of biomarkers. Conduct tests regularly at home from just a few drops, post your samples back to the lab, then view your results and personalised analysis online a few days later.
I can see a genuine market for this, people love the anonymity the internet provides and would hate to be seen by someone going into a therapists office in real life.
I can also see how professionals in this field could quickly expand their client base and really open themselves up to an international audience.
I will be keeping my eye on Plus Guidance, I think they will go places.
The Plus Guidance blurb;
PlusGuidance.com is an online counselling platform that provides people with immediate confidential access to counsellors and therapists from all over the world, via video call, voice call and instant messaging; securely and anonymously.
Honestly I wasn't that taken by the idea, they seemed to be marketing themselves as a sexier Skype or Google Hangouts. Even if they are (it wouldn't be hard) I don't know if video conferencing needs to be sexy?
I think if there was some new functionality on display I would be more interested.
LyteSpark's official blurb;
LyteSpark is a fast, flexible video conferencing and event platform that’s easier to use and better quality than Skype or GoToMeeting, with no downloads or complicated signups. We provide virtual equivalents of things you already do: meetings, team working, company presentations, and client calls. Our aim is to make virtual collaboration as natural and efficient as talking to the person next to you.
People Power App
From a technological point of view I think this is incredibly interesting, I like the idea of getting data about one person from several sources and collating it in a meaningful way – there are some challenges there that would be fun to overcome.
I would be interested to see how accurate the algorithm currently is, it seems to make assumptions that people don't lie on social media and that people present themselves differently across the different platforms.
There are also the ethical implications of allowing an algorithm tell if you someone is the right fit at a certain stage of interview.
The People Power App blurb;
We spend more time engaged with social media than any other channel. People Power App seeks to use the rich data we naturally generate in our social worlds to help companies identify people who culturally fit their organisations, and help individuals better understand themselves.
It is a smarter iPhone camera app. It uses online storage to backup and retrieve photographs so that you are never going to run out of space when you try and take a photograph.
It seems to do clever things with saving lower resolution versions locally and the higher resolution images online. The theory being that on an iPhone you will never appreciate the massive files that are saved by default.
I have signed up to be told when this app will be available for download – I think it is going to be great.
IceCream's official blurb;
IceCream is a new camera app that never runs out of space. It makes it easier to organise, protect and share your photos through a simpler user interface and automated high-resolution backups.
They demoed an app that will let offline retailers advertise to folk and offer them discounts / promotions.
I have mixed feelings about this type of idea, I don't know who is going to want to be sold to. On the other hand I do think offline retailers need something to try and compete online.
It will be interesting to see how this idea pans out.
The official Ethos blurb;
Revitalising the High Street. Following funding from Innovate UK we have developed a demo system that allow small "bricks and mortar" retailers to advertise to local people and also to offer incentives such as discounted parking and bus travel to attract people back to the high street. The app addresses the challenges that physical based business are facing from online stores through a new service that creates new value between the citizen, the city and business.
The final demo of the evening was perhaps the most interesting. The concept of Wriggle is a small cheap band you can wear and pre-setup to either give out details to all, accept details from all, or a combination.
When two people shake hands wearing a Wriggle their details will transfer as per their settings.
The goal is to make them cheap enough (if I recall correctly £5 was mentioned) that they could almost be a single use thing at conferences and large gatherings.
Official Wriggle blurb;
Wriggle looks towards bringing conferences and exhibitions to the twenty first century. It aims to shatter the fishbowls full of business cards and burn their contents to ashes. The basic idea is using a cheap, disposable wearable. With it, we will transform the way people interact during conferences and exhibitions & enable organisers to better understand their clients
Yet another great demo evening with some interesting apps and delicious pizza!
If you are about London when the next even is on I highly recommend checking it out.