From baseball to which side of the escalator people ride, Tokyo and Osaka have always been friendly rivals. Now, the battle is heating up for startups as well. At Hack Osaka last night, 10 startups from seven different countries took the stage to pitch their ideas.
Check out the winners below.
Gold Prize – Docquity
Docquity is the LinkedIn of India and Southeast Asia’s medical world. The app is an invite-only social network for medical professionals.
The idea for Docquity came after founder and CEO Indranil Roychowdhury’s father was rushed to the hospital in 2011 and only saved by a treatment suggested over the phone by a medical student in the US.
Docquity keeps trust high by partnering with official national medical associations. Currently the service has over 30,000 verified doctors all over Southeast Asia and India. Doctors can message each other, participate in case discussions, and also complete continuing medical education (CME) credits.
Indranil is looking to collect a fee from pharmaceuticals to connect with doctors or offer sponsored CMEs.
Docquity received approximately US$2,700 in travel credit.
Silver Prize – Holiday Sitters
Holiday Sitters helps parents traveling with children find a baby sitter in their holiday destination.
The service is up and running in Amsterdam with over 100 sitters who speak 21 different languages. A sitter costs around US$16 per hour for up to three children for a minimum of three hours.
The ultimate aim is to fully support parents while traveling by providing other services like renting kids essentials, such as strollers or baby cars that can be hard to travel with.
Holiday Sitters received approximately US$1,800 in travel credit.
Bronze Prize – Marui-PlugIn
Marui-PlugIn is a plug-in for Maya’s computer animation and modeling software Autodesk. The plug-in allows virtual reality (VR) and 3D content creators to use HTC Vive or Oculus Rift controllers to design in VR directly.
Because it is a plug-in, it is easy to integrate previous projects or objects developed in Maya, so users do not have to learn a new medium.
The team is currently targeting game makers. Over 1,000 people downloaded the free beta and around 30 people have signed up for the roughly US$20 a month subscription model since its release late last year.
Marui-PlugIn received approximately US$900 in travel credit.
Mimi tests your hearing and creates a personalized sound profile to enhance your music listening experience.
The app uses a test to determine which frequencies of sounds you have difficulty hearing and then adjusts the output ranges – like a personal EQ for your ears – to compensate.
With over one million hearing tests completed, the company is now developing a software development kit so other services can tap into their individualized hearing profiles.
Kekkan Bijin “Beautify capillaries” by At
At’s device provides a non-invasive way to measure the health of your blood capillaries.
Keeping capillaries healthy can improve blood circulation which has many potential health and anti-aging possibilities.
The combined software and hardware allows people to see their blood flow in real time. The patent pending capillary analysis system has been developed in joint research with Osaka University, and nearly 700 devices have been sold so far.
Caption Hospitality provides software for hotel management and operations.
Caption’s online software, Crono, allows hotels to manage reservations and promote on different travel channels like Airbnb, Booking.com, and Expedia all in one place. The system can also handle front and back offices duties like payments and scheduling housekeeping.
Since Crono’s launch in September 2016, there have been 1,682 reservations made with 15 hotels.
Hacarus is a healthcare app that helps users track their diets and exercise. Using a combination of algorithms and registered dietitians, Hacarus encourages people to make healthy choices throughout the day.
Last year it competed a crowdfunding campaign to develop a digital scale linked to the app to simplify counting calories. The company is now partnering with enterprises and fitness clubs to keep employees healthy, keep insurance costs down, and keep club members dedicated to diet and exercise programs.
Cardiomo is a wearable device and application which tracks a user’s vital signs. Continuous health monitoring can help save 15.8 million lives per year, says co-founder Larry Chua, citing an Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation report.
The device can track heart rate, blood pressure, respiratory rate, as well as other vitals in real time. If the app detects that a wearer, who may be at risk for cardiovascular or another disease, has a high stress level or may be in trouble, it can notify doctors or relatives.
The device and app will cost approximately US$200 per year and there have been around 650 pre-orders in three months for a beta test.
Timescope is a public virtual reality kiosk which lets you explore historic sites.
Similar to the giant binocular kiosks you see at tourist locations to get a better view, Timescope is a weatherproof “time machine.” For example, while standing in front of the Bastille in France, people can see what it looked like in 1416 when it was completed or when it was stormed during the revolution in 1789.
In addition to reconstructing sites in 3D or giving 360-degree tours of the city, the team hopes it can bring greater public interest to urban projects and allow people to see what the future beholds.
ParkiCity by Parkisseo
ParkiCity eases the chore of trying to find parking in the city.
Beacon-like sensors guide users to open spots throughout the city and keep track of availability in real time. Spots can also be marked as handicap-only, electric vehicles, or with other custom labels.
The system has been used in parts of the city of Carcassonne in France since late last year, and the company is now working on a high volume installation with a French national TV broadcaster.
Although not live yet, the next step is to eliminate the need for parking meters. Users will be able to register their vehicle and payment details in the app, which will then bill users automatically for parking duration.
Converted from Japanese Yen. Rate: US$1 = JPY 112.18