In late 2017, we graduated three incredible startups from the second Fiterator cohort. While we continue to collaborate with them and help them gain traction within (and outside of) our industry, they’re busy making over 40 deals happen - so it’s time to look into the future and introduce the 2018 Fiterator cohort!
We’re really excited about the technologies our new cohort brings to the table this year, ranging from identity security to AI-enabled VR/chat support to a twist on cloud computing. The teams are also pretty badass, and what’s even more exciting is how they are going to impact member companies and their customers. We’ve been hard at work vetting the technology, teams, and business models of these startups - and we’re excited to introduce them.
We proudly present Fiterator 2018:
Our dependency on digital is growing exponentially - and cybersecurity threats are an increasing concern. Standard procedures for account access - whether bank, email, or device - typically include a fingerprint, a password, or two-factor authentication, but these options are cumbersome, interrupt the flow, and are susceptible to hacking. As our identities continue to move into the digital world, especially with the growth of IoT devices, maintaining ease of use while still keeping our digital identities secure will be key to the growth of the connectivity industry.
Averon’s security solution is the world’s first fully-automated mobile security platform. The company’s patented Direct Autonomous Authentication™ (DAA™) technology allows users to seamlessly and securely access devices and accounts using a mobile phone, with no downloads and no apps.
According to CEO Wendell Brown, digital identity and authentication are two of the biggest issues in today’s society:
“At Averon, we've answered these challenges by offering the highest level of security combined with the most seamless user experience. Authentication must be effortless to be implemented widely and create the kind of sea change needed for user security now and in the future.”
Wendell Brown, CEO, Averon
Why humans should care: Digital assets are supposed to be faster and more secure than their physical counterparts - but these login processes have been cumbersome and not as safe as we would expect. Averon uses the technology already in your phone to log you into any account you own (including your cable box!). This means no more passwords, two-factor authentication, or apps.
The robust infrastructure of the connectivity industry is the backbone of the internet - every home and business security system, web search, and TV binge session rely on this physical network. When something in the system breaks, a field technician is sent out to fix it. Frustrating for the customer and expensive for the service provider.
Blitzz has tackled these system challenges for the customer and the provider. Their video, AR and AI- enabled video platform allows field technicians to connect with customer support agents over interactive real-time video & chat, decreasing the time it takes to solve problems. Customers are also interacting over live video & chat with provider support teams - creating a customer-centric workflow. Blitzz can be seamlessly deployed over phones, tablets, desktops and smart glasses empowering technicians to get help while having their hands free to follow instructions.
"Blitzz is important because it enables the much-needed but missing feature of visual collaboration at any point in a workflow where customer service or field service agents are alleviating problems for the customer."
Dr. Rama Sreenivasan, co-founder & CEO, Blitzz
The platform allows teams to exchange documents, photos and videos with one another, easily contact relevant experts for assistance and contribute and share knowledge providing critical support analytics. Blitzz improves NPS scores, first-time fix-it rates while reducing truck rolls, technician turnover, casualty and warranty losses.
Why humans should care: With Blitzz, calling the cable guy (or the car repair guy, or the roofer) is no longer a half-day ordeal. Customers can chat clearly and easily with customer support teams. And providers spend less money solving problems - and that means they have more cash on hand to invest in the cool technology customers really want to see.
Technology like smart homes and cities, AR/VR, and AV have been at the forefront of upcoming consumer technology for years - but despite advancing technology and individual devices coming to market, they’re not yet as widespread as we’ve all expected. The super-low latency required for the fast data transfer needed is largely unavailable because the public cloud is too far from the edge - often over 500 miles away.
Mutable is a Public Edge Cloud that provides a similar offering to AWS, Google, and Azure, by combining the resources of micro, regional, on-premise, and cloud data centers. Mutable allows code to be deployed automatically to the edge, reducing the time needed for devices to communicate with data centers.
"It's not about moving data further, faster - it’s about moving the compute closer to the user or the device in order to have fewer obstacles on the pathway to the next generation of tech."
Antonio Pellegrino, founder & CEO, Mutable
Mutable also gives larger companies with existing infrastructure - such as Multiple Service Operators ("MSOs") - the ability to leverage their unused cloud edge real estate. As a result, MSOs can capitalize on their assets - and no valuable compute power goes unused.
Why humans should care: All the technology that people have been eagerly anticipating is prohibited for mass market by a lack of low latency, expensive consumer hardware, and battery limitations. Moving cloud operations to the edge with Mutable will make these technologies more accessible for everyday life, meaning that we get the AR/VR, AV, IoT, and all of the other technology we’ve been hearing about for so long.
UpRamp was created to be the bridge between the global connectivity industry and the startup community, because we believe that bringing these two worlds together drives both innovation and entrepreneurship - and ultimately, that means a better connectivity experience for customers.
Of course, startups are more than just their technology - they’re a team of humans as well, which is the most important part for us. After months of reviews, interviewing teams, and learning about their challenges and successes, we’re confident that the founders joining us for the next four months are dedicated to learning about and finding a fit for themselves - and their technology - in the connectivity industry. From now until December, they’ll be making connections with our members to make connectivity faster, safer, and more widespread - and we can’t wait to guide them on that journey.