Tech in Asia Singapore 2015: 4 startups that’ll change your life

Pay attention to these startups, they have the potential to be the next big thing in tech

Before a great product is unveiled, it must come from a great idea. And that’s what we’ve seen at Tech in Asia Singapore 2015.

As always, there is no lack of mindblowing concepts that captured our attention. While most of the startups as this year’s showcase were wooing investors, some were already implemented and demonstrated its usefulness to consumers.

These are the four that made it to our list of startups to watch in 2015.

Eatigo

The thing about restaurants is that they are charging you the full price during off-peak periods. This is kind of annoying, and you would think, “Hey, shouldn’t they give paying customers a discount when business is slow?” That sounds very much like Groupon, except it’s hard to get a reservation because 1532234 people are thinking the same thing.

So rather than calling non-stop to get a reservation, Eatigo lets you see which restaurant has an available slot. Oh, did we mention you get as much as a 50% discount just for making a restaurant booking during its off-peak hours? This changes every 30 minutes, so fastest finger wins!

Furthermore, you don’t have to make an upfront payment, you’ll get that discount upon turning up and paying for the bill. So no pressure, if you really can’t rush down, you’re not paying a single cent.

Reservations via Eatigo can be made online or through its iOS or Android app.

Nana

Hey, if adults use sleep monitors to improve their sleep, why not make one for babies? And instead of strapping said infants with an uncomfortable heart rate monitor, Nana came up with a less intrusive option - a sensor mat.

It’s not exactly the most revolutionary invention, but it serves its purposes very well. For one, the sensor mat is inconspicuously placed under mattresses up to nine inches thick. Heart rate and breathing are constantly monitored, both of which are fed through the cloud to the parents’ smartphone via an app.

And what’s next? The cloud-connected app will do basic analysis of the amount of light and deep sleep, feeding the results to parents. Nana didn’t specify the full details of the analysis, but like most sleep monitoring apps, it suggests tips to improve your child’s sleeping pattern.

One thought - perhaps it’ll work even better if it wakes parents before the baby kicks up a fuss when they’re roused from a deep sleep.

Pre-orders for the Nana sensor mat have begun and it costs US$249. The product is expected to ship in September 2015.

Grouphunt

We can all agree that nothing is cheap in Singapore. Prices are marked up, and it hurts the wallet when you’re buying it on your own. Hence, why mass ordering a product to receive a bulk discount has always been the solution.

But rather than relying on a forum to gather orders, Grouphunt goes one step further. It’s a crowdsourcing platform, allowing users to log in and suggest products for mass ordering.

Voting commences once a suggestion is made, and with 50 votes collected, a purchase request is sent to all voters. At this point, voters have the choice to follow through or cancel the order. And this is where Grouphunt one-ups the traditional forum mass ordering idea. As the middleman, Grouphunt is committed to the order, regardless of how many people eventually go through with it.

Based on past transactions, Grouphunt estimates that the drop off rate is less than 20%, which is still manageable for the bulk discount to kick in.

Airfrov

Life as a frequent traveller is hard. Long hours aside, you tend to spend more when you’re abroad. So it figures that you might as well make some money from requestors who want specific items from your country of visit using Airfrov.

This peer-to-peer system is essentially a two-way street - travellers can post where they’re going, allowing requestors to contact them directly. Likewise, this taps into the community to fulfill requests, and there’s no limit to what you can request. From Lego sets, Oakley sunglasses to even the most basic stuff like chocolates, it’s up to the requestor to decide what they want, and what the traveller can fulfill.

But just because there’s no moderation process when you post a request, don’t ask for some weird or banned items that can’t get through Singapore customs. Because the folks at Airfrov are watching. And they’ll also ban those who try to fob off counterfeit items or default on payments.