Innovative Startups to Watch in 2016

Entrepreneurship will flourish in 2016. Following a year where an escalating number of ventures were launched by baby boomers, women, and people of color, as well as the mainstream, it’s likely that growth will not slow and these groups will continue to bring forth a flock of truly innovative projects and businesses.

Bolt, founded by Satyajeet Mohanty, is the first  ‘smart’ mobile-phone charger for motorbikes. Not only does this device quickly charge mobile phones, but it tracks entire routes, and it has a unique detachment design that protects it against theft.

Inspirock is a discerning travel app that offers itinerary possibilities based preference and logic. The app presently covers more than 11,000 destinations in the U.S. and Europe, but they have plans for expansion that will include itinerary plans for more than 190 countries.

EduKart helps students to plan out their education in India and internationally. The platform supports students as they acquire degrees, diplomas, certifications and entrance coaching.

Nextbit has developed a cloud-based smartphone, Robin, which is scheduled for release during early 2016. The device, which is the first of it’s kind, offers unlimited cloud storage and allows for apps to be ‘paused’, which halts the transmission of data without having to delete the app forever. Also, the $400 smartphone is equipped with a Snapdragon 808 processor, a fingerprint scanner, amplified dual speakers and much more.

Brigade is a platform developed just in time for important elections. Sean Parker, the co-founder of Napster, created the platform to promote reform and civic engagement. The company has demonstrated in interest in educating voters about candidates and initiatives, and it provides an arena to offer support for issues, causes or individuals.

Serial entrepreneur Philip Kaplan is the mastermind behind DistroKid, a music distribution service that helps up-and-coming artists become featured on Google Play, Amazon, Spotify, iTunes and 150 other locations and online destinations. The new business is expected to gain the attention of major record labels in the coming year.

Light.co developed a smartphone that’s equipped with the features found in a dSLR camera. Priced at $1,699, the L16 will begin shipping this summer.

LiveList offers a guide to live- streamed events, easing efforts to follow favorite artists. The listing service will also feature user-generated content, and the platform is poised to become a popular distribution tool for artists with or without a record company backing them.

Crew32, which is focused on the small business service industry, is headed by Jason Nazar, writer and founder of the DocStoc (acquired by Intuit). The stealth startup is based in Santa Monica and is co-founded by Investd.in cofounder Yadid Ramot and BetterWorks co-founder George Ishii.


Eddie Dovner is an entrepreneur, inventor, and CEO who is based in West Palm Beach, Florida. Learn more about Eddie Dovner by visiting his pages on LinkedIn, Twitter, and SlideShare. Also, please learn more by visiting EdwardDovner.org and EddieDovner.com.

The Ten Best Apps for Startups

Startup companies are entrepreneurial ventures that come in all sizes and forms; and they’ve been on the rise, particularly as technological advancements have helped to nurture the growth, innovation and ambition of a newly developed company.

Every day, new ideas and applications are conceived to help facilitate the development of these innovative businesses, via apps that provide optimal organization and productivity. Slack, Pushover, Rescue Time and Evernote  have been deemed essential for budding businesses, here are the names of some other tools and apps recently developed that’s helped to make startups and their founders a force to be reckoned with.

Meet, an app released by Sunrise, allows users the quickest way possible to schedule a one-on-one meeting. The time selected by the invitee is automatically added to the calendars of anyone involved in the scheduling.  The sleek app has been deemed “a better way to RSVP.”

Wonder is a research tool, connecting users with researchers who search the web to answer questions that may seem unanswerable. After the researcher is sure that the answer is relevant and accurate, they then forward the response directly to the inbox of a client. This helps startups by removing the need to conduct timely research, and they’ll be provided with coverage that assess every angle of the topic.

Better Error Pages enable the creation of free 404, 500-level, and maintenance pages in as little as a minute. These error pages can be beautiful, and can include support information or a link to the company’s URL. Better Error Pages provides user-friendly templates, and they quickly email all relevant information to the user.

Makerbook is a directory of free resources for creatives. Launched in May 2015, the tool includes a hand-picked list of free resources, helping to connect creative businesses with the services and applications that they truly need.

Design Pitfalls is a free course shared with users via email, educating users on how to skirt usual beginner mistakes when designing a website. David Kadavy authored the free course, which teaches design fundamentals with hackers in mind.

Breather is an app that connects users with a space to make a call, have meetings or unwind at an hourly rate. The posh, private spaces are a delightful alternative to holding a meeting in a loud park or coffee shop.

Trello is an elevated whiteboard app, which is great for managing teams of freelancers, composing a screenplay, or staying organized and transparent when dealing with a team. The app eases communication and facilitates collaboration.

Mailchimp is an email marketing tool, allowing companies an opportunity to create newsletters and manage mailing lists. The customized email templates and the other services make it easier for companies to connect with their chosen audience. Also, it’s free to send up to 12,000 emails monthly to up to 2,000 subscribers.

Dropbox is a popular platform for easy, reliable storage. Not only does Dropbox offer free trials, but the service works across all operating systems and devices.

KanbanFlow, a web-based app, simplifies office communication. With the app, managers can connect with their team, create schedules and upload documents, and the premium version offers a cumulative flow diagram and revision history.

 

Tips for Making Your Business More Efficient 

If you’re anything like me, you’re always looking for ways to make your business operate better and more efficiently than ever before. Rather than make a drastic overhaul to your business model, start small and start smart. Check out these tips for making your business smarter, better, faster and stronger.

Make Sure Employees Have Consistent and Reliable Access to Information 

Any advantage your business has over other businesses in your area or industry can quickly fade if your company network is compromised, becomes sluggish or is otherwise unreliable. Allow your employees to work at their absolute best by ensuring they have immediate access to the internet, the company database and anything else they need to do their jobs.

Streamline Communication 

While there are more ways to communicate with customers than ever, you want to cut out as many unnecessary steps as possible. For instance, it’s a good idea to link your current network phone system to a customer relationship management (CRM) solution to give customer communications an upgrade. Now a customer’s information will pop up on the computer screen, phone screen or both.

Cut Out Unnecessary Travel Time

There’s nothing like being out on the open road (or air), but often that open road leaves your business open to a dip in productivity. Rather than send yourself and employees out on business, use video and web conferencing instead. Now you don’t have to spend time driving or going through security, and you don’t have to spend money on tickets, hotels, rental cars and meals.

Make It Simple and Easy to Work Together

When it’s time for your employees to work together, make it easy for them to do so. Unified communications, video conferencing and interactive calendaring are all designed to allow your employees, suppliers, partners and even your customers to synch up and do business.

Sit down and take a good look at the way your business currently operates. While you might think it’s a well-oiled machine, there are sure to be a few improvements to be made.