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Top 10 Equity Crowdfunding Investment Opportunities for Startups Revealed at 2017 OurCrowd Global Investor Summit in Jerusalem, Israel

27 Feb

OurCrowd Global Investor Summit Reveals Top 10 Trending Equity Crowdfunding Investment Opportunities in Jerusalem for Global Angel, Seed-Stage and Venture Capital Investment Firms 

By Robert Hoskins

OurCrowd Global Investor Summit Reveals Top 10 Trending Equity Crowdfunding Investment Opportunities

OurCrowd Investor Summit Reveals Top 10 Trending Equity Crowdfunding Investment Opportunities

Jerusalem, Israel – OurCrowd made history in the crowdfunding industry and hosted the biggest equity crowdfunding investment summit ever held in Israel called the “Startup Nation.” With more than 6,000 guests from 82 countries attending, including startups, venture capitalists and strategic investors, the event was packed with entertainment, excitement and information to capture a real vision for the future in Israel. Also in attendance were over 200 multinational corporations including Honda, Innogy, GE, Shell, Intuit, Microsoft, and Samsung Ventures.

Click here to watch more videos or Click here to see more event photos!

Over the past 12 months of working with leading ag-tech, auto-tech, bio-tech, drone-tech, fin-tech, high-tech, security-tech, space-tech and virtual-tech startups, OurCrowd has identified its top 10 investment opportunity categories of global startups and entrepreneurs equity crowdfunding that investors should be researching and considering for equity investments during 2017:

Top 10 Equity Investment Opportunities

1. Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning Go Mainstream
2. Seeing Is Believing: VR and AR Become a Critical Business Tool
3. Obey the Sound of My Voice: Voice-Driven Apps Filter Out the Noise
4. Apples and Oranges: AgTech Disrupts the World’s Oldest Industry
5. Industrial and Agricultural Drones Take Off
6. Is That a Doctor in Your Pocket? Digital Revolutionizes Healthcare
7. Here, There, Everywhere: Blockchain Applications Finally Take Hold
8. Boldly Going Where No Company Has Gone Before: SpaceTech
9. Cybersecurity for Critical Infrastructure Becomes Critical
10. Autonomous Driving Picks Up Speed

1. Artificial Intelligence/Machine Learning Go Mainstream

Driven by exponentially faster computing power and cloud computing, “teaching machines” is becoming easier and more scalable, enabling AI to go mainstream across a wide range of industries: including consumer marketing and retail, entertainment, digital health, and newer areas like autonomous driving and advanced robotics.

We are most excited by companies building applications which solve real world problems, applying AI in areas that can truly have an impact on the quality of our lives.

2. VR and AR Become Critical Business Tools

Did you know that in operating rooms across the US, brain surgeons are already using Virtual Reality (VR) to rehearse and simulate surgery in order to be more effective?  VR and Augmented Reality (AR) is not just about show business, entertainment, and 3D gaming, but also about saving lives, industrial solutions, and infrastructure.

In our view, VR and AR are about to go mainstream and will be used across a wide range of sectors from sports analytics to building airplane wings. These are definitely interesting technologies to keep an eye on!

3. Voice-Driven Apps Filter Out Background Noise

Have you ever tried using Siri in a car going over 50 KPH?  Or talking to Alexa with the kids making noise in the background? Good Luck! As we all know it does not work.

However, we believe the era of voice driven computing is coming. In the last 10 years, we have moved from primarily using keyboards to swiping and using touch-screens. OurCrowd believes that in the next five years we will move to talking to our devices as the primary mode of man – machine communication.

Core voice recognition software has become almost perfect at understanding the human voice and getting our words correct. The missing ingredient is its ability to enable our machines to get a clear signal and cancel background noise so that Siri really can HEAR what we are saying.

We are excited about companies finding innovative ways of making this happen.

4. Ag-Tech Disrupts the World’s Oldest Industry – Farming

As we all know, the world oldest industry has not been known for its technological flexibility. However, these days we witness the blooming of Agriculture-related technologies for different reasons.

Traditionally farming is a family owned business and we now see how second generation of farmers are much more techie and open to adopt advanced farming technologies. In addition, the last two years have seen mass consolidation between leading players in AgTech creating deep pockets and a big appetite for acquisitions.

5. Industrial and Agricultural Drones Take Off

Over the past couple of years, we have heard a lot (maybe too much) buzz about Amazon using drones to deliver packages to your doorstep or bring you fast food on demand.

While this is fun, we think the most interesting and profitable uses of drone technologies lie within industrial and agricultural markets.

Drones are already playing critical roles in facility security, mining, oil and gas exploration, crop protection and surveying landmass. Building industrial scale drones, which are robust and reliable is difficult and challenging, but companies that can meet that challenge are where we want to focus.

6. Digital Healthcare Puts a Doctor in Your Pocket

As much as we try not to overuse this term, artificial intelligence is actually a powerful factor in the rapidly growing digital health sector. Letting us crunch old data sets from electronic medical records all the way to data collected from wearables will increase our quality of life and perhaps even prevent deaths.

Similarly, computer vision and machine learning are enabling companies to extract new insights and diagnostics from images.

7. Blockchain Applications Finally Take Hold

Timing is everything! In the buzzword competition of 2016, blockchain was the hands down winner.   Since then there have been fits and starts for this important financial technology. Many VCs have been disappointed with their investments in this sector; however, we think now is the time to take a fresh look, as this technology matures and evolves beyond Bitcoin across multiple applications such as: sharing economy, data security, logistics, and of course, banking and finance.

8. SpaceTech Goes Where No One has Gone Before

We are thrilled to see that a sector dominated by governments and states is now opening up to private ventures. NSLComm is inspiring entrepreneurs to aim high. We now see prestigious VC funds building space portfolios and enabling these ventures to take off.

In term of funding needs, what used to be super-expensive is becoming much more affordable, with standardization of hardware protocols as well as general cost reductions of consumer electronics. Satellites can now be built and launched for less than half a million dollars, creating exciting opportunities to commercialize the technology.

9. Cyber Security for Infrastructure Becomes Critical

Are you worried about your car getting hacked? How about cyber criminals sneaking in through your air conditioner or refrigerator?  Well we are too! Cybersecurity is not new; and in fact, the investing landscape is quite crowded, and the playing field is highly competitive.

But we believe the key shift for investing in the next few years will be a move from protecting IT infrastructure to protecting all infrastructure. We are excited about companies that are designing full-proof solutions to protect everything from automobiles to electric grids and everything in between.

10. Autonomous Driving Picks Up Speed

Did you really think we were going to finish this top-10 list without mentioning the most overhyped tech trend?  We all know that autonomous driving is coming, but the question is when?  Should we still pay for our kids to get drivers licenses?

Thanks to core technology expertise and industry-leading companies such as Waze and Mobileye, Israel has become a global hub of automotive innovation. Now that we have a direct flight to Boston and Silicon Valley; our #1 prediction is that the next one will be direct to Detroit.

OurCrowd is one of the world’s leading global equity crowdfunding platforms for accredited investors. Managed by a team of seasoned investment professionals and led by serial entrepreneur Jon Medved, OurCrowd vets and selects opportunities, invests its own capital, and brings companies to its accredited membership of global investors. OurCrowd provides post-investment support to its portfolio companies, assigns industry experts as mentors, and takes board seats. The OurCrowd community of almost 17,000 investors from over 110 countries has invested over $400M into 110 portfolio companies and funds. OurCrowd already has thirteen exits to date, two IPO’s and eleven acquisitions.

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Robert Hoskins, a seasoned Front Page PR veteran provides more than twenty-five years of external communications, media relations, digital social media and SEO skills to Front Page PR’s crowdfunding PR and media relations service portfolio.
Robert Hoskins
(512) 627-6622
@Crowdfunding_PR


Mr. Robert Hoskins is a seasoned marketing veteran with a proven track record of helping entrepreneurs, startups, small businesses as well as Fortune 500 corporations launch successful marketing communications campaigns to gain market traction for a wide variety of products and services.
On a regular basis, Mr. Hoskins consults with crowdfunding campaign managers as well as crowdfunding sites, portals and platforms to deliver successful crowdfunding marketing campaigns.
Google search “Robert Hoskins Crowdfunding” to see why Mr. Hoskins is considered one of the industry’s foremost crowdfunding experts that has amassed a huge social media following, which is dedicated to supporting donation-, rewards- and equity-based crowdfunding campaigns.

IBM, Indiegogo and Arrow Electronics Partner to Fuel the Next Generation of Internet of Things with Crowdfunding

20 Feb

Entrepreneurs to Get Free Access to IBM’s Watson IoT Platform and Discounts on Cloud Services

By Robert Hoskins

Munich, Germany – IBM (NYSE: IBM) announced a partnership with Indiegogo and Arrow Electronics (NYSE: ARW) to help bring new Internet of Things (IoT) ideas to life. This collaboration brings IBM’s Watson IoT platform and cloud services together with ideation to production services from Arrow Electronics and Indiegogo – the world’s largest crowd sourced funding platform with more than $1.1 billion raised.

IBM, Indiegogo and Arrow Electronics Partner to Fuel the Next Generation of Internet of Things Startups

IBM, Indiegogo and Arrow Electronics Partner to Fuel the Next Generation of Internet of Things Startups

Now, qualified Indiegogo entrepreneurs will have no-charge access to IBM Watson IoT Platform via Bluemix for an unlimited amount of time, giving them access to more than 160 industry-leading cloud services to incorporate ready-to-use capabilities, such as artificial intelligence, Blockchain, advanced data analytics and cyber security into their latest IoT inventions. In addition, qualified startups will have access to IBM’s global network of technical and industry expertise, education, mentoring and enterprise customers and business partners, all of which can help to bring new and innovative IoT products to market quickly.

“We’re very excited to be partnering with Arrow and IBM to help entrepreneurs bring their wildest IoT dreams to life,” said David Mandelbrot, CEO of Indiegogo. “We know that fundraising is only one piece of the entrepreneurial puzzle, and by working together with IBM and Arrow we’ll be able to continue making it easier for entrepreneurs to bring their ideas all the way from concept to market.”

Experts predict that by 2022, the IoT landscape will be worth $14.2 trillion.1 A critical driver to this growth will be entrepreneurs and early-stage businesses which, while armed with ideas, lack the resources and skills to develop these next-generation IoT innovations and bring them to market.

Early examples of Arrow Certified Indiegogo IoT startup projects include:

  • Fitly, which created Smart Plate, the first intelligent nutrition platform that instantly analyzes and tracks what you eat. An industry first, Smart Plate was developed with support from Arrow and IBM Cloud, and was successfully funded on Indiegogo.
  • PlayDate, a startup that launched on Indiegogo, created the first smart ball for pets that lets owners interact with their dogs and cats from anywhere in the world. The PlayDate team ran the highest grossing pet tech crowdfunding campaign to date, but used Indiegogo for much more than just funding. They were one of the first campaigns to get Arrow-certified, a badge of approval on their manufacturing plans, and they received $100,000 in flash funding as well as engineering design support. “Arrow and Indiegogo’s support was incredibly valuable,” said Kevin Li, CEO at PlayDate. “Our campaign with Indiegogo opened doors with partners and acted as market validation for investors. Indiegogo and Arrow partnering with IBM will be a huge benefit for entrepreneurs using the platform.”

Through this partnership, IBM, Indiegogo and Arrow are removing key barriers and providing the expertise, resources and funding that entrepreneurs need to develop innovative new connected products and quickly and cost-effectively bring them to market. Combining IBM’s powerful cognitive capabilities with Indiegogo’s entrepreneur platform and Arrow’s end-to-end technology design and production expertise will rapidly increase the volume and quality of IoT devices in market and help fuel a new generation of entrepreneurs.

“Entrepreneurs and startups play a vital role in creating the next generation of businesses – their drive, innovation and passion for bringing new ideas to life is particularly important in building the IoT,” said Harriet Green, General Manager Watson IoT. “We are thrilled to partner with Indiegogo and Arrow Electronics to accelerate IoT innovation and development around the world working hand in hand with some of the best and brightest entrepreneurs, developers and startups to build an even better IoT.”

In addition to IBM’s benefits, Arrow provides qualified Indiegogo campaigns with up to $500,000 in benefits, such as component parts, online product design and prototyping tools, comprehensive technical reviews with Arrow engineers, manufacturing and supply chain services and sustainable recycling. As the only global technology company capable of providing comprehensive, sensor-to-sensor, full IoT product lifecycle solutions, Arrow is uniquely positioned to guide the biggest names in technology, and startups and makers alike, along their IoT production journey.

“IBM will take our groundbreaking collaboration with Indiegogo to a whole new level, helping us reach more entrepreneurs and get their innovative products to market quickly and cost-effectively,” said Arrow’s Chief Digital Officer Matt Anderson. “As one of the world’s largest providers of electronic and IT products and services in the world, Arrow has the breadth of resources and depth of expertise to successfully shepherd promising entrepreneurs along their path to market. Arrow engineers around the world are eager to collaborate with Indiegogo entrepreneurs on cutting-edge tech designs that incorporate the best that IBM’s Watson IoT and cloud services have to offer.”

IBM made the announcement at its first-ever Genius of Things Summit at the company’s Watson IoT headquarters in Munich, where customers, partners and influencers gathered to examine how Watson clients are implementing IoT solutions that drive exceptional outcomes. Around the globe, IBM is working with more than 6,000 clients, across industries, to help them truly realize the benefits of IoT. For more information, please visit:on IBM Watson IoT

Originally launched as a crowdfunding platform, Indiegogo is the place for entrepreneurs to move their ideas quickly from concept to market. Entrepreneurs on Indiegogo are able to showcase their ideas directly to users, take orders for products early in their lifecycle and ultimately build direct relationships with their first customers. Indiegogo is the platform of choice for early stage entrepreneurs and the creative teams of some of the most successful consumer product companies in the world. The company was launched in 2008 and is headquartered in San Francisco, with offices in Los Angeles and New York.

# # #

Robert Hoskins, a seasoned Front Page PR veteran provides more than twenty-five years of external communications, media relations, digital social media and SEO skills to Front Page PR’s crowdfunding PR and media relations service portfolio.
Robert Hoskins
(512) 627-6622
@Crowdfunding_PR


Mr. Robert Hoskins is a seasoned marketing veteran with a proven track record of helping entrepreneurs, startups, small businesses as well as Fortune 500 corporations launch successful marketing communications campaigns to gain market traction for a wide variety of products and services.
On a regular basis, Mr. Hoskins consults with crowdfunding campaign managers as well as crowdfunding sites, portals and platforms to deliver successful crowdfunding marketing campaigns.
Google search “Robert Hoskins Crowdfunding” to see why Mr. Hoskins is considered one of the industry’s foremost crowdfunding experts that has amassed a huge social media following, which is dedicated to supporting donation-, rewards- and equity-based crowdfunding campaigns.

POMM Unveils New Android and iPhone Snap On Biometric Security Case With Up to 256GB of Encrypted Data Storage and a 1500 mAh Lithium Battery for 50% Longer Cell Operation

6 Jul

Customers Will Receive All-Day Power, Six Times More Built-In Local Encrypted Data Storage for Up to 32,000 Photos, 20 Hours of Video or 18,000 Songs as Well as Secured Apps for Sharing Files

By Robert Hoskins

New York, NY – To prevent more waves of worldwide smartphone hacking and embarrassing security breaches, POMM Inc. today rolled out a new type of biometric authentication and data encryption cell phone case that keeps data files private and secure from hackers.

POMM Biometric Security Case to Help Android and Apple iPhones Guard Against Hacker Attacks

POMM Biometric Security Case to Help Android and Apple iPhones Guard Against Hacker Attacks

POMM™ is a must-have add-on for Android Smartphone and Apple iPhone owners that want biometric authentication; a highly secured, personal data storage cloud; and hacker-proof cell phone applications. The POMM also comes with a slim built-in lithium battery that provides up to 50% more battery time.

POMM Spec Sheet: http://privatepomm.com/he/spec-sheet.pdf

Why Do Cell Phones Need Biometric Authentication?
This is an easy question to answer for government officials such as Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump or celebrities including Jennifer Lawrence, Kim Kardashian, Kate Upton, Kaley Cuoco, and others, whose cellphone iCloud accounts were hacked leading to the discovery of susceptible software apps in over 1 billion Android and iPhones using HummingBad, Xsser or WireLurker.

Why are Smartphones Apps Susceptible to Hacking?
A large number of popular cell phones apps do not have critical user authentication protections. For example, “HTTP Request Hijacking” (HRH) affects at least 10,000 known apps on Apple’s App Store. And this is just one of a hundred ways to hack into what most people think are secure smartphones and Internet backup storage clouds.

What is Biometric Security?
Biometric security allows smartphones to authenticate a user’s identity using fingerprint, iris, face and palm scans as well as certain types of pulse, blood oxidation, body temperature and voice recognition to verify that cell phone users are valid, alive, well and not suffering from coercion.

What is a Private, Secured, Local Storage Cloud?
POMM (Privacy on My Mind™) is a mini-computer encased inside a durable, impact resistant cell phone case that performs biometric authentication as well as implements advanced encryption algorithms. Data is stored in a local, private, and very secure cloud versus Internet-based clouds that are favorite targets of ID theft, hacker attacks and other cyberspace criminal abuse.

Who Needs a POMM?
Hundreds of millions of computer-age, modern economy cell phone users worldwide who want to feel secure in accessing, managing, and updating their digital data files.

When Will the POMM Be Available?
POMM is ready to go to market now and is currently raising $10 million by selling shares via a Title IV, Reg. A+ Equity Crowdfunding Campaign to begin mass production and achieve market penetration. Investors that purchase shares can also receive one of POMM biometric security cases. To learn more, please visit http://pommoffering.com.

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IndieGoGo Crowdfunding Campaign Seeks Starting Goal of $50,000 to Spread Early Literacy Skills to One Million Preschoolers Through Storybooks, eBooks, Smartphone Apps, and Ed-Tech Website

27 May

Teaching Preschoolers Pre-Reading Skills Improves Academic Development, Promotes Lifelong Learning, Increases Family Engagement, and Instills Confidence and Perseverance When Faced With Challenges

By Robert Hoskins

Toronto, Ontario – Ruth Rumack’s Learning Space (RRLS) launched a $50,000 IndieGoGo Crowdfunding campaign that will pre-sell a set of five Alpha-Mania early childhood learning storybooks and other perks that will make teaching pre-reading skills fun for children, parents, teachers and caregivers. The Alpha-Mania storybooks are the result of teaching early literacy programs to thousands of young children over the past 16 years. Click here to watch the video.

Ruth Rumack's Alpha-Mania Crowdfunding Campaign to Promote Early Childhood Literacy

Ruth Rumack’s Alpha-Mania Crowdfunding Campaign to Promote Early Childhood Literacy

All five of the Alpha-Mania books are written and ready to publish. The goal of the crowdfunding campaign will be to pay for large publishing production runs of the Alpha-Mania storybooks, and then digitize the materials and turn them into eBooks and Smartphone apps, and eventually expand the program to an online educational web series and website where caregivers, parents and teachers will be given access to a full library of ed-tech early literacy games and reading resources. The plan is to make ed-tech materials easy to download and use on a wide variety of Smartphones, iPads, tablets and other types of eLearning devices.

Over the years, the Alpha-Mania pre-reading program has given thousands of young children a head start in developing their early literacy skills at RRLS as well as numerous established daycares, preschools, and nurseries throughout Canada. The plan is now to expand the RRLS learning experience and share it with a global audience.

“Using the power of crowdfunding, we would like to not only pre-sell these lifelong learning materials to people and schools that can afford them, but also use a significant portion of the fundraising campaign’s proceeds to ship storybooks to educational centers where they will have the greatest impact,” says Ruth Rumack, RRLS’ Founder and Director of Education. “Regardless of a child’s living environment, many parents are simply not aware of the tremendous benefits that all children receive from learning phonological awareness at an early age.”

“Printing and shipping storybooks to customers is very expensive and time consuming,” adds Evan Brooker, RRLS’s CEO. “But once we raise enough money to digitize our materials and turn our pre-reading games and interactive activities into Smartphone, tablet and laptop apps, we can sell and distribute them worldwide for a fraction of our current costs. Instead of educating thousands, our goal is to raise awareness and teach millions of people the benefits of engaging their children with early literacy skills in order to build a strong foundation for reading and problem solving before they enter kindergarten.”

Crowdfunders who donate to the Alpha-Mania crowdfunding campaign will receive many valuable perks/rewards that will be sold in singles, multi-book packaged deals for small schools and will provide large school districts discounts when materials/training classes are purchased using licensing agreements.

Students, parents, teachers and schools who contribute money to the crowdfunding campaign can choose between unique perks such as attending the launch party, chatting with the author, or naming a character in one of the upcoming stories. Check out the crowdfunding campaign for more details.

Please buy one of the following Alpha-Mania perks to raise awareness for the benefits of teaching preschoolers early childhood learning skills:

Early childhood learning years are critical for preschoolers because research shows that children gain a tremendous advantage in their ability to learn when they are taught to develop, not only academic skills, but also non-cognitive social and emotional skills and behaviors that lead to their long-term success.

There are many non-cognitive skills that are critical for an individual to strive for and succeed in when reaching long-term goals. Researchers have found that habits such as tenacity and perseverance can have just as strong an influence on achievement as intellectual ability.

What attitudes do children have about learning? Do they feel like their abilities in a subject are fixed — “I’m just not good at reading!” or do they recognize they can grow — “I can learn to read, but I need to learn some Alpha-Mania strategies to figure out tricky sounds and words in order to master the fun puzzle of reading.”

“Growth mindset,” for example, is more likely when students believe they can achieve and when they believe that intelligence is malleable rather than fixed. This also helps develop non-cognitive skills such as perseverance, self-regulation, and effective strategies for enhancing student motivation and engagement.

A large portion of the crowdfunding donations will be used to provide Alpha-Mania to underfunded schools and libraries. Donors will receive the satisfaction of knowing that they helped a small child develop pre-reading skills regardless of their current position in society and give them a head start in developing academic skills that will lead to a lifetime of learning as well as arm them with the confidence, tenacity and perseverance they will need when faced with tough lifetime challenges.

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Carlson Wireless Launches $5 Million Crowdfunder.com Equity Crowdfunding Campaign to Raise Money to Deploy TV White Space 802.22 Broadband Wireless Networks

19 May

The New FCC-Approved “Super Wi-Fi” TV White Space Radios will make it possible to serve 4 billion people living in 3rd world developing countries, 90% of which do not have access to the Internet

 By Robert Hoskins

Sunnyvale, CaliforniaCarlson Wireless Technologies announced a $5 million Crowdfunder.com equity crowdfunding campaign to develop and deploy its a global leader in TV White Space (TVWS) unlicensed broadband wireless technology. At speeds of up 25-Mbps, which is three times faster than current technology, and half the cost, Carlson’s RuralConnect Generation 3 TVWS radios (470 to 698 MHz) will offer a superior broadband wireless solution than is currently available in the marketplace. These white space wireless radios will make it possible to build wireless networks in underserved rural areas where there is a huge pent up demand from millions of customers that currently do not have any form of broadband internet access.

Carlson Wireless Technologies Launches Equity Crowdfunding Campaign on Crowdfunder for RuralConnect TV White Space Radio Gen3

Carlson Wireless Technologies Launches Equity Crowdfunding Campaign on Crowdfunder for RuralConnect TV White Space Radio Gen3

In order to transform its FCC-approved prototype into a mass produced reality for worldwide distribution, Carlson Wireless is offering the private placement memorandum and is currently selling equity shares to raise investment venture capital. 

The equity fundraising will enable completion of both the software and hardware for the new product, as well as provide working capital for the first Generation 3 production run, with an expected release to market before the end of 2015. Carlson Wireless currently has a presence on the equity crowdfunding platforms AngelList and Crowdfunder.

This funding will allow Carlson Wireless to help fuel world-wide Internet connectivity through next generation dynamic spectrum wireless communication systems. By helping the company fund the final stages of this project, investors can be a part of this fundamental economic and social change.  

Globally, there are 4 billion people without access to the Internet, 90% of which are from the developing world. Domestically, millions of Americans in rural areas lack access to broadband connectivity due to current market and technological constraints.

Carlson Wireless developed the FCC Certified RuralConnect as a solution that provides affordable broadband Internet access by transmitting signals over vacant TV frequencies. Using this spectrum, the RuralConnect signal penetrates foliage and travels around hills to provide broadband in rural and remote locations throughout the world that cannot be served by traditional line-of-sight radio technology.

RuralConnect can cover an area up to 20 km in diameter, with the ability to deploy a hotspot using minimal infrastructure. TVWS technology also expands the capability of businesses and governments to extend communications and private networks such as: small cell sites, smart cities, the Internet of Things (M2M), utilities, oil & gas operations, public safety, wireless backhaul, security, video surveillance and more.  Moreover, acceptance of the technology is accelerating worldwide, with regulatory approvals earlier this year in Canada and the U.K.

In the United States, the abandoned television frequencies are primarily in the upper UHF 700-Megahertz band, covering  TV channels 52 to 69 (698 to 806 MHz).  This new spectrum became available as TV broadcasters migrated from analog to digital broadcasting technology.

Digital transmission uses much smaller slices of spectrum and can be packed into adjacent channels, while analog ones cannot. This means that the band can be “compressed” into fewer channels, while still allowing for more transmissions. In addition to white space assigned for technical reasons, there is also unused radio spectrum which has either never been used, or is becoming free as a result of technical changes. 

For more than a decade, Carlson Wireless has designed and developed products to deliver high-speed Internet and wireline-quality voice connectivity to rural communities and businesses with remote operations. Specializing in hard-to-reach regions, Carlson Wireless provides fixed-wireless systems using TV White Space and microwave technology to deliver voice and data connections.

Working with customers, trial participants, and other industry leaders, Carlson Wireless has created a third-generation product that will exhibit the enhanced throughput and superior propagation characteristics required by the market at an attractive price point. The RuralConnect Generation 3 will utilize channel bonding in order to triple Internet connection speeds up to 25 Mbps, reduce latency, and support four times as many users per sector; all under the new IEEE 802.22 standard.

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Equity Crowdfunding Platform, MicroVentures, Touts Track Record of Raising More than $50 Million for New Pre-IPO Startup Companies

21 Oct

MicroVentures portfolio includes some of the world’s leading equity investments including Twitter, Facebook, Yelp, Republic Project, LaunchRock and Loom

By Robert Hoskins

Austin, Texas –  Online venture capital platform, MicroVentures, announced that the company has raised more than $50 million directly for its portfolio companies, while generating positive returns for its investors through successful exits, such as the recent acquisition of Space Monkey, a cloud data storage company, by Vivint, on of the the largest home automation services provider in North America.

MicroVentures portfolio includes some of the world's leading investments including Twitter, Facebook, Yelp, Republic Project, LaunchRock and Loom

MicroVentures portfolio includes some of the world’s leading investments including Twitter, Facebook, Yelp, Republic Project, LaunchRock and Loom

Accelerated growth of MicroVentures will be fueled by new investment opportunities that cater to investors’ rising interests, such as late stage pre-IPO companies and real estate. The company’s focus includes investments in internet technology, media and entertainment, software, green technology, mobile, social and gaming.

“We set out five years ago to create the user-friendly platform that connects investors and startups at the seed stage,” said Bill Clark, founder of MicroVentures. “Today MicroVentures not only connects, but leads investment rounds for our portfolio companies – the first equity crowdfunding platform to play this role. This milestone showcases the viability of the equity crowdfunding business and we look forward to continuing to grow alongside our investors and entrepreneurs.”

The more than $50 million raised to date includes investments in successful companies such as Twitter (IPO), Facebook (IPO), Yelp (IPO), Republic Project (acquired), LaunchRock (acquired), and Loom (acquired by Dropbox). Other notable start-ups that are currently part of the MicroVentures’ portfolio include Structured Polymers, Soldsie, Biomeme and Oru Kayak, who was featured in the last season of Shark Tank and is actively raising capital via the MicroVentures platform today.

“MicroVentures gave us the opportunity to pitch in front of over 20,000 global investors,” said Nathan Derrick, CEO of Supplyhog. “This allowed us to spend less time raising capital and more time growing our business.”

Since establishing itself in 2010 as one of the first equity crowdfunding platforms that is a FINRA registered broker-dealer, MicroVentures has grown its investor community from 200 individuals to more than 22,000 individuals. The company has done so through building expertise, security, selectivity, due diligence, personalized customer service and accessibility for both accredited and non-accredited investors. The MicroVentures team is committed to providing confidence for both startups and investors through its dedication to rigorous due diligence and to personal relationships with investors.

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iControl Networks Acquires Piper, a Wi-Fi -enabled, Z-Wave Standard All-in-One Home Awareness and Security Management Solution

16 Apr

Piper, the Compact, All-in-One Home Awareness and Management Device Now Enables Live Interaction and Integrated Security Functionality for a Total Home View

By Robert Hoskins

Ottawa, Ontario – iControl Networks, a leader in connected home technology and innovation, announced the availability of two enhancements to the Piper all-in-one home awareness and management device: two-way audio and multi-Piper capability, which provides the ability to support more than one unit and create multiple security zones.

Piper, the Compact, All-in-One Home Awareness and Management Device Now Enables Live Interaction and Integrated Security Functionality for a Total Home View

Piper, the Compact, All-in-One Home Awareness and Management Device Now Enables Live Interaction and Integrated Security Functionality for a Total Home View

Piper, the compact, Wi-Fi-enabled, all-in-one home awareness and management device that launched general availability in North America in late January 2014 and was recently acquired by iControl Networks, enables users to seamlessly monitor what’s important in their life from their mobile device, all without service contracts or fees.

With multi-Piper capability, users will be able to create independent security zones using up to five Pipers within their homes. Each Piper operates as an independent sentinel and joins together to form an integrated security network. Seamless Z-Wave integration allows for complete home awareness and automation control. Shared environmental and motion sensor data, camera views and recorded videos provide the ability to track changes and movement through each zone.

Simple to use, two-way audio provides users with the ability to directly interact via Piper app’s camera view with occupants, elderly parents, children and even pets.

“The ability to simply and easily interact with and secure your entire home — not just one room — when you’re away has been a priority of ours since we first developed Piper,” said Russell Ure, creator of Piper and Executive Vice President and GM of iControl’s Canadian business unit. “We’re excited to offer an enhanced experience to our current and future customers.”

Piper has been recognized for its excellence in innovative design and engineering and originally debuted its crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo in August 2013, where it successfully tripled its funding efforts. Allowing users to easily monitor, secure and interact with their homes through Z-Wave home automation accessories, Piper continues to receive support and praise from homeowners, apartment renters, parents, pet owners and design enthusiasts alike.

Piper features include:

  • Security – Customize three security modes (home, away and vacation), motion detector and piercing, 105-decibel siren.
  • Automation – Integrate Z-Wave accessories into Piper’s security modes, control them remotely, on a schedule, or using environmental data.
  • HD Panoramic camera – 180° fisheye lens, electronic pan, tilt, and zoom, 1080p camera sensor.
  • Customized alerts – Phone call, text message, email and push notifications to alert users and their trusted circle when security rules are triggered.
  • Environmental sensors – Monitor and control home temperature, humidity, ambient light and sound.
  • Elegant design – Simple, intuitive app. Compact, two-toned form with brushed metal legs.
  • Smart hardware – ARM processor, battery backup, internal memory for video storage, 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi.
  • Free cloud storage – Cloud infrastructure provides Piper a place to store event videos, send various types of notifications and perform additional login/connection negotiation.
  • Android & iOS support – Available on Android and iOS smartphones and tablets.
  • NEW Two-way audio – Talk directly to occupants through Piper and app on mobile device.

Two-way audio and multi-Piper capability will be available as a free firmware and software update. The Piper House Kit, which comes with three units in either black or white, can be purchased at http://store.getpiper.com for $649 USD. Piper can also be purchased by itself for $239 or bundled with Z-Wave home automation accessories such as smart switches and door/window sensors that allow consumers to control their homes remotely, ranging from $359 to $849 USD.

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UrbanCloud.com Launches Indiegogo Crowdfunding to Change The Way People View Networks, Information and Social Commerce

26 Jun

Indiegogo Crowdfunding Campaign Currently Raising Funds to Build a New Type of Social Network Designed Specifically to Promote Social Commerce for Individuals and Businesses

By Robert Hoskins

Urban Cloud is an innovative social network that unites people on a platform designed to promote collaboration. The company claims that there is still no social media platform that provides a secure, enjoyable interface for social commerce – one that respects its users’ privacy, and discourages the buying and selling of social capital with fake profiles. Instead, why not focus on collaboration?

UrbanCould plans respects its users' privacy and discourage the buying and selling of social capital with fake profiles

UrbanCould plans respect its users’ privacy and discourage the buying and selling of social capital with fake profiles

The founders of UrbanCloud believe they can make a difference by creating a social network designed specifically to meet the needs of social commerce applications such as promoting  crowdfunding campaigns.

“We recognize the problems existing social networks face and we’re offering you the chance to fix them. We’re tired of seeing the same old user experience, the impact of fake profiles, annoying advertising and misleading, opaque privacy policies,” said Sharan Soni, UrbanCloud. “We have already signed several brands onto the platform who share our vision: Quintessentially Lifestyle & Creative, Aftershock London, Patrick Hellmann Collection, Citizen M, Royal Spades and Ava Mirabelle.”

Soni added, “We are crowdfunding this exceptionally well-designed and secure platform, dedicated to social commerce for individuals and businesses. With your collaboration and contribution(s) we will make this happen.”

The company is focused on developing five key areas of innovation:

  • Innovative Design – Urban Cloud is the world’s first social media platform that seamlessly unites social networking and marketing.
  • Native Advertising – Urban Cloud uses a proprietary algorithm called STAC (Space, Time, Active, Content) to blend advertising into a user’s social timeline.
  • Validation – Urban Cloud is able to weed out unverified and fake/spam user accounts, allowing for an enhanced social media experience for advertisers and users.
  • Positive Reinforcement – Urban Cloud features a unique reward system, through which a user can accumulate points for interacting with a business. These can be redeemed for rewards to build brand loyalty and recognise social influencers all at once.
  • Retailing – Each and every user can play a role in effortless and seamless retailing of virtual goods and services using Urban Cloud.

Only half of what Urban Cloud will do has been released. The rest is being given over to the people; their voices will influence what features are implemented next and how the cloud develops.

Connectify Lanches Kickstarter Crowdfunding Campaign to Finance Broadband Servers in Underserved Areas

18 May

Where Do You Want Broadband Internet Access: Crowdfunding a Faster Global Network on Kickstarter

 By Robert Hoskins

“Where Do You Want Faster Internet?” That’s the question that Connectify Inc. is asking as they Kickstart their new Switchboard technology this month. Connectify Switchboard is a new cloud service that lets Mac and PC users combine multiple Internet connections for faster speeds and increased reliability using an international network of “Speed Servers” in the cloud. In order to plan and deploy these Speed Servers, Connectify is working with Kickstarter backers to essentially crowdsource a worldwide network in real-time.

Connectify Network for Faster Global Internet Access

Connectify Network for Faster Global Internet Access

Backers of the Connectify Switchboard Kickstarter project can now vote for the location of the next Speed Server to be rolled out during the campaign. An interactive “heat map” a www.wheredoyouwantfasterinternet.com shows where the company currently has servers, and where backer interest is most fervent for upcoming Speed Servers.

By posting in project comments, on Facebook, and Tweeting with the hashtag #backswitchboard with their location, Connectify’s Kickstarter backers can add their location requests directly to the heat map. Kickstarter is all about community, and that’s why we decided to come back to the crowdfunding platform to help us plan and deploy our cloud network,” said Connectify CEO, Alex Gizis. “Switchboard Kickstarter backers now have an opportunity to help us build out a worldwide network, and we’re confident that the end result will be a Switchboard infrastructure that works seamlessly for our users worldwide.”

Already, backers from all over the world are giving the company valuable feedback, both on the Kickstarter project page and via social media channels. Less than a week into the campaign, and the interactive map asking Where Do You Want Faster Internet? is starting to light up. With interest growing by the hour, perhaps Connectify has struck upon a new model, where vital data on network coverage can be crowdfunded by users months before companies spend millions to roll out their servers.

Connectify is a privately-held company that develops next-generation networking software for Mac, PC, and mobile platforms. Founded in 2010, Connectify’s mission is to give all users the power to perform complex networking tasks at the click-of-a-button. For more information on Connectify, visit www.connectify.me .

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Skydog Successful Kickstarter Crowdfunding Campaign Allows Home Wi-Fi Business to Expand Operations

13 May

By Robert Hoskins

PowerCloud Systems announced that Skydog reached its $75,000 funding goal on Kickstarter, and will now extend its home network offering to larger homes and small businesses. Skydog is a Wi-Fi router and mobile companion app that brings a user-friendly approach and innovative management functionality to home networking.  With one week left to raise post-goal funds, PowerCloud Systems has unveiled two new offers available via Kickstarter: a Skydog Wi-Fi Range Extender Kit, ideal for large homes and small businesses, and a Multi-Dwelling Skydog Four-Pack, for those who want to manage multiple networks, such as adult parents’ homes, on a single account.

The Power of the Skydog's Cloud Delivers Wi-Fi to Your Wireless Mobile Users

The Power of the Skydog’s Cloud Delivers Wi-Fi to Your Wireless Mobile Users

Both new offers were created in response to requests and feedback from Kickstarter backers to broaden the reach of Skydog’s unique network visibility and control features.  The extender kit will allow users to cover up to 6,000 square feet with wireless internet access and all of Skydog’s control and management functionality.  This range comfortably covers large houses and many small business, such as restaurants and professional offices, where the ability to offer firewalled Wi-Fi access to customers, clients or patients is increasingly important.

The Skydog router four-pack enables simple, single-account management for multiple networks and locations, such as a second home, vacation cabin, or parent’s home across the country. The Skydog Wi-Fi Range Extender Kit is available for a pledge of $299, while a four pack of Skydog routers is available for pledges of $399 or more.

“We were thrilled to have reached our funding goal so quickly because it proved that Skydog addresses an unmet need for simple visibility and control of personal Wi-Fi networks,” said Jeff Abramowitz , founder and CEO of PowerCloud Systems. “We are very grateful to our backers and look forward to getting Skydog into their homes. With our new offers, we can better serve those with larger homes and multiple dwellings, as well as provide an easy-to-use solution for small businesses.”

The proliferation of connected devices in homes and small businesses is creating a complexity challenge for anyone responsible for managing a network. PowerCloud Systems, with its extensive experience providing Networking-as-a-Service to the enterprise, has the expertise and, with the success of Skydog’s Kickstarter campaign, the consumer validation to disrupt the home, and now small business, networking space.

The Skydog solution represents a new era in network management, enabling users in households and small businesses to improve their connected experiences. The solution gives real-time visibility to network administrators, who can monitor their network in terms of which users and specific devices are connected to it, for how long, and for what purposes. With Skydog, heads of households can even manage broadband usage by setting up zones which place bandwidth priority on certain functions, like the home office during the day and streaming video at night. Furthermore, all of this can be done anytime and anywhere via the Skydog mobile companion, an HTML5 app that works on any smartphone or tablet.

PowerCloud Systems is a leader and industry pioneer for cloud-powered wireless networking. The company’s patented and award-winning CloudCommand™ technology was invented at the Palo Alto Research Center (PARC) and makes deploying and monitoring Wi-Fi networks and services easy for businesses with mobile customers. The CloudCommand platform is deployed worldwide in hotels, schools, retail chains, managed care facilities and other businesses seeking truly affordable, enterprise-grade Wi-Fi. Investors include PARC, Qualcomm Ventures, Javelin Venture Partners and Walden Venture Capital.

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