While visiting Israel the week of the 15th October, I met with a number of startup companies in meetings set up by their investors.
I was struck by the apparent completeness and no-nonsense business approaches of the companies. They appeared to me as strong as the best I saw at Demo Fall 2007 last month.
Mobile platforms and mobility-centric consumer companies dominated. The mobile platforms are targeting download speeds, matching content to devices, and attempting to link the walled gardens between content providers and mobile carriers. The consumer mobile apps exemplify the trend toward “lifestream” applications like Twitter and Jaiku (acquired by Google), in which the mobile phone delivers real-time information as well as a journal between a user and the user’s community.
I'll provide a brief overview of each company, collected in posts organized by the investors who introduced them:
First, Yoss Vardi's companies (all of them on Windows Server, btw)
ATLAS CT http://relive.atlasct.com/ … ATLAS CT provides a vector-based (for speed and readability on different devices) mapping and community platform targeted at mobile users. ReLive is an application built to show off the platform, but it’s extremely slick in its own right. ReLive tracks a user’s travel and associates photos and notes with key locations. Users can share and relive (via browser) the experience with others. The client currently requires a GPS phone, but Atlas CT is working to support other location services (carrier triangulation, WiFi).
FRING http://www.fring.com/ … Voice-enabled Mobile IM (i.e. voice over IM). Fring just got an $11M 2nd round from Northbridge Ventures. Here are Dave Drach’s notes on Fring from the recent Demo in Germany (thanks, Dave): Mobile VOIP – peer to peer. Works with all IM clients. Works with over 400 mobile devices. Works with Windows Mobile. Works without the SIM card. Mobile carriers gotta love that. Ultraroaming – and whisper. Can move between types of wireless networks, i.e. from WIFI to 3G, etc. Presence is constantly updated. Phone used without SIM card – it found the wireless network and dynamically connected and continued the call. Fring won the demo gods award.
Speedbit: http://www.speedbit.com/ … download/upload accelerator. Speedbit analyzes network speed and file availability to improve file up- and download by downloading conent from multiple sources simultaneously rather than one. There are three products, all built around the network optimization core. Top Story ion Businessweek.com: Speedbit claims to be able to download a movie in approximately 20 minutes
- Download Accelerator. The main product provides client-side network optimization
- Speed Optimizer. Client-side performance monitoring, cleanup and diagnosis
- Video Accelerator. Analyzes performance for key services (iTunes, YouTube, CNN, Facebook,, etc), optimizes and bookmarks
Dyuna http://www.dyuna.com/ … a mobile entertainment platform which allows a federation of mobile carriers and content providers. Dyuna has built relationships with content providers and indexed content and facilitates cross-selling and usage analysis. Essentially, Dyuna is addressing the built-in conflict between the carriers (who want exclusive access to content shipped on their networks) and the content owners (who want the broadest possible reach). Dyuna provides a content catalog, carrier provisioning, billing and settlement, and content-relevant advertising. They have agreements with a number of content providers in Israel, including Orange Israel.