It’s always exciting to hear about the progress made by businesses that we’ve previously featured. Here are some updates from founders who have all got in touch to share their latest news:
When political and governmental authorities suffer from corruption, it can affect the lives of citizens in numerous negative ways. While it can be difficult to tackle abuse of power head on, the Bribespot app has helped uncover hundreds of cases of bribery in countries from Italy and Guatemala to Argentina and Kenya since launching its Android app in 2011. Having since created a version for iPhone users – available in nine different languages – to widen its reach, the team behind the app hope it will continue to provide empowerment to citizens.
Attendees at the 2012 Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival may remember the usual wristbands used to gain entry offered something new – in the form of RFID-enabled social media integration. UK-based id&c, which provided the wristbands, has since brought the technology to the recent Bonnaroo Festival in Tennessee and 200,000 of the devices are currently bringing extra engagement and security to the Robbie Williams UK tour in collaboration with Samsung.
When the global financial crisis hit in 2007, one of the worst affected countries was Ireland and it is still experiencing the fallout, with unemployment rates of over 13 percent. One solution proposed by ConnectIreland – a government collaboration with development agency IDA Ireland – was to use crowdsourcing to find businesses looking to expand in Europe and subsidise their setting up in the country. The enterprise recently announced the secured creation of 70 new jobs in Country Meath and reports suggest that – despite initial skepticism – the scheme may be providing some cause for optimism.
When we first covered SPARKON back in 2012, it had a rather different guise. Known then as Empower.me, the site was focused on helping parents to incentivize their children to perform well in school and do the chores at home. In order to engage young people, SPARKON has now shifted to a teen-centric platform that aims to help them unlock their potential. By providing details about their interests, students can download a personalized report that maps out their potential futures, with fun learning videos to inspire them to work on realizing their dreams and rewards for reaching personal achievements.
Biosense’s urine checking app isn’t the most attractive use of a smartphone, but nonetheless an important one – especially considering it can detect up to 25 different conditions without the need for expensive medical equipment. Although still available to buy in India and the US, the app recently came under fire from the Food and Drugs Administration in the latter country, which claims that the developers have not gained clearance to sell the app. Biosense maintains that it is registered with the FDA, and that the app itself isn’t a medical product, it merely works in collaboration with urine dipsticks that already have FDA clearance. It remains to be seen what will happen with uChek, but it will certainly have repercussions for other startups hoping to launch similar platforms.