Leading AI startup, Niki.ai has partnered with India’s largest online entertainment ticketing platform BookMyShow. Fulfilled by BookMyShow, Niki users can now search and book movie tickets across the country at their preferred cinema venues, while simply chatting with Niki. The Artificial Intelligence powered chat experience provides easy discovery and a host of options to the customers.

Niki, while using emerging technologies of Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning & Natural Language Processing, makes the whole movie booking process as simple as talking to a human booking agent since chatbot ‘Niki’ has the capability to understand complex queries. For example, say you want to watch a movie today with your office colleagues, but you can only watch after work and for convenience of everyone, you want to watch it in a theatre near your office. You can simply type Show English action movies near MG Road after 8PM for today’.

You can thus apply multiple filters, such as movie name, genre, show timings, theatre location and more, easily in a single text message to Niki. Niki understands that users have multiple preferences while booking movie tickets and makes it extremely simple to work around these by presenting the users with options and recommendations that best suits their needs. In addition to being speedy and convenient, the experience offered is also highly personalised.

Speaking on the partnership, Sachin Jaiswal, CEO, Niki.ai said

We are excited to partner with BookMyShow and integrate their movie ticket booking platform on Niki. With our vision to provide consumers with the most natural, simple and intelligent mode of transacting online, we have leveraged our technology of artificial intelligence combined with tackling consumer problems to build a one of a kind conversational theatre discovery and ticket booking experience.

Parikshit Dar, Director, BookMyShow said

BookMyShow has always been keen to partner on initiatives that promote new technologies and we are now excited to take lead in exploring the potential of chatbots in movie ticket bookings in India. With 75% of transactions coming through mobile on BookMyShow, we understand the importance of a ‘mobile first strategy’ and believe that our association with Niki.ai is a step forward in this direction.

About Niki.ai

Artificial Intelligence [AI] holds immense potential for the global market, and this is the reason why the year 2017 is being predicted to be that of Artificial Intelligence. Among the most renowned, famous and successful startups that have mushroomed recently around this concept is Niki.ai, a technology focused company that envisions to make artificial intelligence accessible to everyone, i.e. Businesses and Consumers. The company provides a simple and easy to use chat interface to shop for products and services. To the businesses, it provides a plug and play technology that can be easily integrated everywhere including operating systems, on messaging platforms messenger, and on the brand’s applications [app and web].

Started in 2015, and funded by Mr. Ratan Tata and Unilazer Ventures, Niki.ai envisions to provide one shop for everything commerce. Niki is an AI bot who converses to help you shop for products and services and makes the whole journey from discovery to transaction fast, convenient and extremely simple. The Niki App can be downloaded from here

State Bank of India-Collaborative Innovation Centre launched SBI National Hackathon – Code For Bank, an API Hackathon Platform for developers, start-ups and students to put their thinking caps on and come up with ideas and solutions that can change the way banking is done in India. From a technology standpoint, Bank views APIs as a set of micro-services that are individual or a combination of use cases, around which a mash-up of applications can be developed on-the-fly.

Image Source – SBI Hackathon

In the age of digital Banking, SBI is organizing this Hackathon with an objective to invite start-ups, developers and partners to collaborate, ideate and co-develop disruptive and innovative solutions spearheading Indian Banking Technology Landscape. The bank’s effort is to promote an Outcome based Technology Culture amongst Start-ups and Developers with the focus on Developing Cutting Edge Solution for Bank in an agile manner. This will put in focus the Business Value driven by Technologies like Predictive Analytics, Fin-Tech/Blockchain, Digital Payments, IOT, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, BOTS and Robotic Process Automation.

In the phase-1, participants can register their idea during 20th – 29th May 2017 followed by Hackathon which will start from 6th June 2017 and ends on 20th June 2017.  The initiative will allow participants comprising a team of maximum five people to develop applications or solutions using only SBI APIs, only external APIs and a combination of SBI APIs and External APIs.

SBI keeps innovation on priority and CODE FOR BANK 2017 [C4B 2017] is bank’s biggest step in launching this platform for start-ups and developers in India. The initiative will a part of APIfication Strategy and Transformation which is developed by SBI Collaborative Innovation Centre to create a Boundary less and collaborative development ecosystem which is Technology Agnostic, Agile and completely Digital.

Today all Emerging technology is becoming API based, Fintech is Disruptive, RegTech for Banks is gaining and everything is on Mobile. Banks have to respond to VUCA world [Volatile, Uncertain, Complex, Ambiguous] and local themes like Demonetization, Financial Inclusion, Digital Payments, etc.

C4B 2017 will help drive both External and Internal Innovation. Developers can quickly get an Application Ecosystem View, learn the Bank Technology DNA and start developing solutions using the APIs available on the platform.

For more information, please visit SBI Code For Bank

Google have announced the six Indian startups who have been shortlisted for the fourth class of Google Accelerator Program. These six startups will be joining an inspiring group of startups from all over Asia, Latin America, Africa and Europe at the Google Developers Launchpad Space in San Francisco.  With this batch, a total of 26 Indian startups have so far joined the launchpad accelerator program from India.

Image Source – Google LaunchPad Accelerator

The fourth class will kick off from 17th July, 2017 and will include two weeks of all-expense-paid mentorship bootcamp. This batch of startups will gain from Google’s new curriculum that will help the startups to dig deeper into machine learning and AI and help them leverage Google’s latest technologies to scale their apps.

Paul Ravindranath G, Program Manager, Google India said

These startups were shortlisted from hundreds of startups who applied this year based on their unique value proposition and use of latest technologies like machine learning and AI [Artificial Intelligence] to build high impact solutions that are solving for the Indian context, focusing on new internet users and digital India. We are thrilled to see the quality of startups coming from India and we look forward to working them closely for the next six months.

In the six months program, these startups will undergo intensive mentoring from 20+ teams across Google and mentors from top technology companies and VCs in Silicon Valley. Additionally they will  receive equity-free support and credits for Google products. Post their return from San Francisco they will continue to work closely with Google back in India.

The shortlisted startups include companies that cover optimization of financial services ranging from loans, credit cards, upto date information platforms for train journeys, online video platform focussing on content from Indian cinema focusing on South of India to the unique implementation of AI to aid discovery of recipes for cooking. The list also includes B2B companies that use AI or ML for various applications be it image recognition capabilities to aid medical diagnosis by analyzing visual data, providing solutions for talent acquisition and workforce optimization.

Here’s the full list of shortlisted startups from India

Uber, the  newly designed and re-engineered rider’ app has been rolled out to 100% of its users in India and around the globe, across Android and iOS platforms. Uber riders can now enjoy the faster, smarter and more personalised Uber experience on the new rider app which has been rebuilt completely from the ground up for the first time since 2012.

Apurva Dalal, Head of Engineering, Uber India said

Uber is based on a simple concept: push a button, get a ride. What started as a way to request premium cars, now offers a range of products, making millions of rides possible across  the world. While providing seamless on-demand transportation for riders remains our central focus, the  newly designed rider app is unique as we rebuilt it from ground up to deliver a much faster and improved interface for riders. We are excited that riders across India will now have this superior experience.

The new rider app has been re-engineered, keeping in mind the changing needs of riders around the world. It aims to recapture the clean and simple aesthetics of the original Uber experience, without sacrificing on the choices riders can now expect.

Some of the major changes to the rider app that contribute to a superior Uber experience include:

  • A faster app with a new design
  • Clearer vehicle options, with upfront pricing view
  •  Smarter pickups to help reduce ETA
  •  Personalised in-app shortcuts

The new app offers a host of features, which have already been appreciated by the riders in India:

  • Destination first : The new Uber experience is reimagined around a simple question – ‘Where to?’ After all, riders use Uber to get somewhere-or to someone. And by starting with the rider destination, we can tailor the journey better.
  • Shortcuts : The new Uber app learns from riders’ routines. Frequent riders will see ‘shortcuts’ that predict where one could be headed. This means riders can get moving with just one tap.
  • Saved places : The new app allows riders to save locations that they frequent. This could be a hotel that they prefer to stay at while traveling, favourite restaurants, client’s office, dentist’s clinic or even a friend’s house.
  • Rider ratings : To give riders more visibility into how drivers are rating them, Uber is making rider ratings much more accessible in the app. Now, a rider’s rating will be displayed right under their name in the app’s menu.
  • Pickup experience : The pickup is a core part of the Uber experience. In an effort to make it easier, riders can update their pickup location after they book a ride. This simple fix gives them more control over their pickup experience, and saves everyone time and avoidable headaches.
  • Calendar integration : Riders can now sync their calendar with Uber. With this, riders meetings and appointments will automatically appear as ‘shortcuts’, saving them the hassle of digging through another app to find the right address.
  • Choose the car & compare upfront fare : After entering the destination in ‘where to’, riders can also decide how to get there. They prefer different types of rides for different moments. If the rider is on the way to a party or with business associates, a more spacious uberX ride is preferred, while an uberGO serves as the most affordable everyday ride. And for a run-of-the-mill trip to the market or the lowest cost option, an uberPOOL works well. It’s now much easier to compare the cost of all these options with upfront fares, so the rider can make an informed choice.
  • Once the rider is on the trip, the focus is on helping them make the most of their ride. They can still split the fare, keep track of estimated time to destination and share trip status with friends.
  • On-trip integrations : Soon, it will offer more experiences tailored around rider destinations that will include on-trip integrations with other utility based mobile applications, social media platforms, and news aggregators, among others.

To top these, here are the features most loved by riders in India :

Schedule a ride : A top-requested service from riders around the world, especially from business travelers who use Uber rides for important meetings, appointments, trips to airports and stations, etc., has been rolled out in India. This new feature adds to  the reliability and convenience riders have come to experience on Uber. An uberX or an uberGOride can now be scheduled for as little as 15 minutes to as many as 30 days in advance.

Request a ride for others : Riders have often booked rides for their friends and family members. However, it involved the hassle of coordinating the pickup or managing payments. With the new update, it now works in a much simpler manner. If the pickup location differs from the detected location of the person booking the ride, the app will prompt if the ride is being booked for someone else. If yes, they can select the option and the app will allow them to choose a contact. At this point, the person booking the ride can also choose the desired payment method. Meanwhile, the rider will get two text messages – one with the driver and car details and the second with a link to track the ride.

Split fare : Another interesting feature added by Uber was a fare split, that enabled riders to split the Uber bill with friends. After the trip begins, riders can select ‘Split Fare’ and choose a contact to hit send. The rider’s friend(s) will receive a text with a link that will open the Uber app on their phone. Once they confirm their willingness to split the bill, the fare automatically gets divided between the riders.

Share trip details : Uber’s ride sharing feature enables a rider to send details of the driver-partner and their ride with friends or family members. Once the trip begins, riders can share these details from the app by tapping the ‘send status’ option and choosing a contact on their phone. This functionality is extremely useful to track trip progress in real time.

Choose payment mode : Riders can choose a payment option that works best for them – cash, digital wallet, credit card and debit card.

The new rider app which has been developed using a completely new architecture, also opens up a plethora of possibilities for improving the new rider feed, as well expanding this to the driver app, and even building for the future.

To learn more about the new Uber app, please visit uber.com/whereto

Dial4242 – a pioneer in its segment, app based platform providing users the comfort of booking an ambulance within seconds launches in Mumbai. Dial4242 will allow a user to book the nearest available ambulance and track its location real-time. Founded by Nilesh Mahambre, Jeetendra Lalwani and Himanshu Sharma, Dail4242 aims to eliminate the stress and worries in booking ambulances by setting up a reliable network, reduce the waiting time, and deliver the best in emergency services to people across India.

Introducing and launching the ambulance aggregating platform in Mumbai was ace comedian & prominent actor Vrajesh Hirjee. Services provided via Dail4242 are not limited to emergency situations and can also be used by patients for check-ups, medical appointments, after a hospital discharge or for intercity travel needs.

Available under less than 4 MB, the Dial4242 app is easy to use and has a step-by-step interface for bookings. To call for an ambulance, one simply needs to confirm the pick-up point auto-detected via GPS, add the destination and select the type of ambulance needed. Ambulance variants currently available are Basic, ICU or Cardiac and for the transfer of a dead body.

Nilesh Mahambre, Chairman & Co-founder, Jeetendra Lalwani, Director & Co-founder & Himanshu Sharma, Co-Founder & Head of Operations, Dial4242

The fare estimate and ETA of the ambulance will be displayed for a confirmation further to which the tracking details, and the estimated time to reach the destination with the shortest possible route will be displayed on the app. Once the user reaches his destination, he can pay the fare in cash to the driver or through a host of digital payment options. The user will receive an invoice via email and within the app. Additionally, ambulances can also be booked via the Dial4242 hotline 022-49414242 in Mumbai and these details would be sent to the caller via SMS.

Dial4242 has secured seed capital of approximately Rs. 1 crore from an angel for the purpose of R&D, market research, product development and operations. The technology backed platform has been in development and testing stages for over four months ensuring that it achieves best results in all circumstances and conditions and is now ready for public use. The company is currently in conversation with multiple investors for raising its next round of funds and is being led by its Co-founder and Chairman Nilesh Mahambre. Dial4242 has currently tied up with Wockhardt Hospital, Mira Road and will be exploring associations with other hospitals and medical services entities as a part of service expansion.

Speaking on the launch, Nilesh Mahambre, Chairman and Co-founder, Dial4242 said

When a taxi can arrive in 5 minutes, why can’t an ambulance? This was the moot point for the conceptualization of Dial4242.  Today through a couple of simple taps, we can call for anything from food to cabs; however, it’s surprising that people have to go through so many layers of communications for an ambulance. We are attempting to address this need gap with Dial4242.

Adding to this, Jeetendra Lalwani, Co-founder and Director, Dial4242, said

I owe this idea to my dad. My personal experience during his illness is what led me to believe that there is the need to ease up the anxiety levels of people during medical emergencies. Dial 4242 is an idea which has arrived. It is our endeavour to build a mutually beneficial ecosystem where in the ambulance driver gets his due respect and the customer has the power to save lives with timely action.

Bhalchandra Padwal, Head Digital Strategy, Aoen Digital, the exclusive technology partner for the platform present at the event said

We are partners to the idea, belief and the vision of being able to save human lives with technical assist. Having Aeon Digital on board we will ensure that there are regular updates and innovation in technology to further simplify our entire offering.

Ravi Hirwani, Head – Hospital Operations, Wockhardt Hospital, Mira Road said

Dial4242 is an innovative model and we see great value in associating with such a platform which shall ensure a smooth and hassle-free ambulance booking process. We believe that technology and automating systems is a need of the day and Dial4242 is a perfect fit. We are certain that patients will benefit from the services being provided by Dial4242 and we welcome and support the efforts being made to streamline the system.” added  on associating with Dial4242

Dial4242 services are available from May 18, 2017 across South Mumbai, Western Suburbs and from Virar to Thane and can be used for outstation travel needs as well. The company is in the process of extending their services to entire Mumbai by June. Over 140 ambulances have already signed up with Dial4242 and the company hopes to increase this number to 500 across Mumbai by year end simultaneously launch across India in phases.

The Dial4242 app is currently available to download for free via the Google PlayStore. The iOS version of the app will be available on the App Store shortly.

About Dial4242

Founded in January 2017 by Nilesh Mahambre, Jeetendra Lalwani, and Himanshu Sharma DIAL4242 is an entity of Health Wheels Pvt Ltd and goes it with a tagline ‘Be a Hero, Save a Life’. Dial 4242 has been built to deliver the best in emergency care to people and to empower an individual with its fair and seamless ambulance booking service. The mobile app connects users to emergency facilities by providing a timely ambulance service when in need. By aggregating ambulances, Dial4242 aims to build a convenient ambulance booking ecosystem for drivers, the ones in need and its network of hospitals in India.For more information, please visit Dial4242

The wrap of Google I/O Day 2 saw several technical sessions, tracks and announcements across the Google product ecosystem. Here are the major takeaways for developers in areas including Android Instant Apps, Progressive Web Apps, and numerous improvements in developer tools.

Play Developer and Android Instant Apps

Developers can grow their business with the subscriptions dashboard, which helps them retain subscribers by providing new metrics, like subscriber churn. With Play app signing, Play can now manage the ‘signing keys’ developers use to keep their apps secure, reducing risk from lost keys and allowing Play to reduce APK size. The revamped Play Console includes Android vitals so developers can identify and fix bad behaviors in their app, reducing crashes and battery drain.

On the Android side, instant app development is now open to all developers today with the Android Instant Apps SDK, enabling a new approach for running apps with no installation required. Learn more on the Play Developer blog and the Instant Apps Blog.

Mobile Web momentum with Progressive Web Apps

Progressive Web Apps [PWAs] have gone mainstream as developers globally are increasingly relying on them, and their progress was on display at I/O. If you are a developer building for the mobile Web, PWAs allow you to give users a polished, app-like experience [with easy navigation, offline features, and more], without going through an install step first. At I/O, Google shared more on how PWAs are becoming increasingly popular, especially in emerging markets where data and connectivity are limited.

For example, well-known developers like Twitter, Forbes, and Lancome have seen significant traction with PWA usage, and several teams within Google are also building their own PWAs, including Search, Maps, and more. Learn more on the Mobile Web blog.

Developer Products

Google announced improvements to Firebase, Google’s unified app SDK which launched at I/O last year. Firebase enables developers to build and manage their apps and grow their businesses using Google’s tools. Among the announcements is Firebase Performance Monitoring, which gives developers visibility into how users are experiencing their apps across a variety of devices and network conditions.

Google also spoke of Cloud Functions for Firebase, an integration between Firebase and Cloud that enables developers to run logic without needing their own servers. Learn more on the Developer Blog.

Ads

AdMob, Google’s mobile ad platform, has a newly-redesigned  intuitive UI, app-centric dashboards, and a simpler sign-up flow. AdMob also now gives developers a more complete picture of ‘lifetime value’ – including how often people use the apps, how likely they are to take action within the app/re-engage with it, and how healthy the app’s growth is.

Next, there are new updates to Universal App Campaigns to help developers reach more engaged users across Google’s largest properties. And finally, the new App Attribution Partner Program will now give AdWords users a more consistent understanding of their app’s advertising campaign performance to make better marketing decisions. Learn more on the Ads blog.

VR/AR

Google announced several enhancements to the core technologies that enable VR and AR, and in platforms that make them accessible to more people. In Tango, the technology that enables devices to track motion and understand depth and space, Google announced WorldSense – a positional tracking technology that makes the newly-announced Daydream standalone VR headsets work without any external sensors.

Standalone headsets, a new category of devices built by Google’s partners, are also coming to Daydream later this year. They are easy to use, and the form factor enables partners to optimize components like sensors and displays for VR. And with more than 150 apps, there’s lots to explore, watch and do in VR, regardless of which Daydream-ready device you choose.

The upcoming 2.0 release for all headsets, Daydream Euphrates, has features that make VR more fun and easier to share with others. You will be able to capture what you are seeing, as well as cast your virtual world right onto the screen in your living room. And, soon, you will be able to watch YouTube videos in VR with other people and share the experience in the same virtual space. Learn more on the Daydream blog.

Yahoo announced Athenz, an open-source platform for fine-grained access control, to the community. Athenz is a Role-Bsed Access Control [RBAC] solution, providing trusted relationships between applications and services deployed within an organization requiring authorized access.

If you need to grant access to a set of resources that your applications or services manage, Athenz provides both a centralized and a decentralized authorization model to do so. Whether you are using container or VM technology independently or on bare metal, you may need a dynamic and scalable authorization solution.

Athenz supports moving workloads from one node to another and gives new compute resources authorization to connect to other services within minutes, as opposed to relying on IP and network ACL solutions that take time to propagate within a large system. Moreover, in very high-scale situations, you may run out of the limited number of network ACL rules that your hardware can support.

Prior to creating Athenz, we had multiple ways of managing permissions and access control across all services within Yahoo. To simplify, we built a fine-grained, role-based authorization solution that would satisfy the feature and performance requirements our products demand. Athenz was built with open source in mind so as to share it with the community and further its development.

At Yahoo, Athenz authorizes the dynamic creation of compute instances and containerized workloads, secures builds and deployment of their artifacts to our Docker registry, and among other uses, manages the data access from our centralized key management system to an authorized application or service.

Athenz provides a REST-based set of APIs modeled in Resource Description Language [RDL] to manage all aspects of the authorization system, and includes Java and Go client libraries to quickly and easily integrate your application with Athenz. It allows product administrators to manage what roles are allowed or denied to their applications or services in a centralized management system through a self-serve UI.

Access Control Models

Athenz provides two authorization access control models based on your applications’ or services’ performance needs. More commonly used, the centralized access control model is ideal for provisioning and configuration needs. In instances where performance is absolutely critical for your applications or services, we provide a unique decentralized access control model that provides on-box enforcement of authorization.  

Athenz’s authorization system utilizes two types of tokens: principal tokens [N-Tokens] and role tokens [Z-Tokens]. The principal token is an identity token that identifies either a user or a service. A service generates its principal token using that service’s private key. Role tokens authorize a given principal to assume some number of roles in a domain for a limited period of time. Like principal tokens, they are signed to prevent tampering. The name ‘Athenz’ is derived from ‘Auth’ and the ‘N’ and ‘Z’ tokens.

Centralized Access Control : The centralized access control model requires any Athenz-enabled application to contact the Athenz Management Service directly to determine if a specific authenticated principal [user and/or service] has been authorized to carry out the given action on the requested resource. A service receives a simple Boolean answer whether or not the request should be processed or rejected. In this model, the Athenz Management Service is the only component that needs to be deployed and managed within your environment. Therefore, it is suitable for provisioning and configuration use cases where the number of requests processed by the server is small and the latency for authorization checks is not important.

The diagram below shows a typical control plane-provisioning request handled by an Athenz-protected service.

Decentralized Access Control : This approach is ideal where the application is required to handle large number of requests per second and latency is a concern. It’s far more efficient to check authorization on the host itself and avoid the synchronous network call to a centralized Athenz Management Service. Athenz provides a way to do this with its decentralized service using a local policy engine library on the local box.

The authorization policies defining which roles have been authorized to carry out specific actions on resources, are asynchronously updated on application hosts and used by the Athenz local policy engine to evaluate the authorization check. In this model, a principal needs to contact the Athenz Token Service first to retrieve an authorization role token for the request and submit that token as part of its request to the Athenz protected service. The same role token can then be re-used for its lifetime.

The diagram below shows a typical decentralized authorization request handled by an Athenz-protected service.

With the power of an RBAC system in which you can choose a model to deploy according your performance latency needs, and the flexibility to choose either or both of the models in a complex environment of hosting platforms or products, it gives you the ability to run your business with agility and scale.

Looking to the Future

Yahoo is actively engaged in pushing the scale and reliability boundaries of Athenz. As Yahoo enhances Athenz, it looks forward to working with the community on the following features:

  • Using local CA signed TLS certificates
  • Extending Athenz with a generalized model for service providers to launch instances with bootstrapped Athenz service identity TLS certificates
  • Integration with public cloud services like AWS. For example, launching an EC2 instance with a configured Athenz service identity or obtaining AWS temporary credentials based on authorization policies defined in ZMS.

Their goal is to integrate Athenz with other open source projects that require authorization support and we welcome contributions from the community to make that happen. It is available under Apache License Version 2.0. To evaluate Athenz, we provide both AWS AMI and Docker images so that you can quickly have a test development environment up and running with ZMS [Athenz Management Service], ZTS [Athenz Token Service], and UI services. For more information, please visit Athenz

DesignGild, a first of its kind design led startup accelerator from the house of MIT Institute of Design, announced the launch of its first batch of the accelerator programme with two startups QtPi from Bengaluru and RxHealth from Pune. The boot camp for these startups commences on 22nd May in Pune. The selected startups are from diverse technology spaces.

QtPi and RxHealth will be part of a robust six month immersive accelerator program that leverages the rich design thinking and design doing experience of MIT ID. The program will give startups an exposure to latest design methods, co-working space, access to prototyping facilities, IPR consulting and facilitation, business development support, public relations and processes that will enable them to unlock business opportunities.

A set of experienced design mentors and a dedicated design team will work together with the startups on various stages from design strategy to operations. To name a few, DesignGild’s mentors include Mr. Atindrya Bose – Ex Country Head- Sony [Playstation business], Snehal Vasani – Managing Director, Kitchen Grace [Part of Asian Paints], Sachin Tagra – Associate VP – Brand Capital, Ashish Despande – Co Founder, Elephant Design; Vice President, Association of Designers of India and Apurva Chamaria – VP & Head – Corporate Marketing, HCL Tech, Abhimanyu Kulkarni, Design Head – Philips, Nachiket Thakur – Director – Innovation & Entrepreneurship – Science & Tech Park, Shekhar Badve – Director LokusDesign, Jay Dutta – Design Partner at Saif Partners.

DesignGild also has a strategic partnership with The Institute of Healthcare Design Thinking, USA.

Speaking on the launch of DesignGild’s first batch, Harshit Desai, COO, DesignGild said

We are extremely delighted to onboard the two startups. DesignGild aims to empower these startups and help them build their product with innovation. The focus of the accelerator is towards strategic design consulting, business model innovation, and hands-on design services to enable seamless integration of design in business. We would be happy to mentor the two selected startups, RxHealth and QtPi who are unique in their own fields.

Prof. Anant Chakradeo, Dean, MIT Institute of Design said

DesignGild has been set up by the MIT Institute of Design, as one of the country’s first design-focused accelerators. The aim of the accelerator is to provide high-quality design mentorship and resources to passionate individuals and teams to create design-led businesses. With this MIT ID will add a new offering to its student by creating the much needed ecosystem under one roof.

Here are the profiles of the startups selected for the accelerator programme

QtPi [Robotics for everyone]

QtPi founder Jaison Leon is an industry veteran from MS, Yahoo, Oracle and Tech Mahindra with software and mechatronics background. QtPi has done years of research to eliminate fatigue caused by theoretical learning and mix with exciting practical.

The company has built ‘plug and play robotic kit’, consisting of Arduino based main board, sensors, actuators, building blocks and mobile app. The kit can be used by 7+ year old kids to build infinite types of robots. QtPi has list of projects & tutorials to assist early adapters. It also works with college students to develop innovative projects using QtPi kit or to design their own product.

RxHealth [Bringing DRS in Healthcare]

Founded by Rohan Prakash, RxHealth is the world’s first Health Informatics Company based in Pune that is catering expert system software in the field of computer-aided prognosis. It uses the avant-garde artificial intelligence solutions that recognize accurate and honest medical diagnosis support.

The principle objective is to provide the best healthcare services to every patient everywhere. It’s non-intrusive, seamless technology converts good doctors into excellent doctors by continuously upgrading their knowledge base and reference network. It helps doctors in better diagnosis and prescribing the most effective treatment to patients thus bringing down the time and cost of recovery.

On the patient side, its technology creates more aware and informed patients by providing them personalized information regarding preventions, doctors, consultations, treatment options, cost, time, precautions etc. The long-term objective is to create an effective, efficient and seamlessly integrated technology lead medical services ecosystem for better healthcare delivery.

About DesignGild

DesignGild is a startup eco-system that provides high-quality design mentorship and business development support to create Design-led businesses, based in Pune. It is leveraging the power of Design to create business value. It provides the right platform to incubate & accelerate innovative business ideas through a design focused road map. It achieves this by leveraging its vast network of experienced design professionals, consultants, academicians, researchers and students. DesignGild believes that they can take a start-up from one plane to a completely new and better one by playing on their strength : Design Thinking. DesignGild will support the selected start-ups to convert innovative ideas into valuable business propositions. DesignGild is an MIT ID initiative. For more informaion, please visit DesignGild