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Treonauts At Innovate! Europe 2006

I’ve just returned from the Innovate! Europe event which took place throughout this week in the sunny, beautiful and extremely friendly city of Zaragoza in Spain. 

Organized by the Guidewire Group (the same people responsible for the famous DEMO events in the US where Palm originally launched to world acclaim some 10 years ago), Innovate! seeks to promote technology entrepreneurship in Europe and brings together leading startups, venture capital firms and world media (among others the FT, Business Week, USA Today and Barron’s).

There was an incredible array of new technologies on show and I found a number of these that were of particular interest for Treonauts:

Digislide has developed a new projection technology called Digismart that could soon allow us to project an 11x17” image of our Treo screen on to any wall or surface up to one meter away.  This could be achieved either by having the unit built-in to future Treo smartphones (a scenario which I currently view as unlikely) or instead via an external device priced at around $200 connected via Bluetooth or cable much like current GPS units.

I initially considered this technology to be somewhat of a ‘gimmick’ and unlikely to ever reach a mass audience but I have to admit that after seeing a live demo of their product I began to be considerably less sceptical.

Below you can see the image of a zebra projected onto a screen from the Digismart module held in my hand.  At this stage it is still only a prototype but we may begin to see some commercial products available within two years.

vpod.tv is a new personal video publishing service similar to YouTube but with even better and more intuitive technology which will launch shortly.  Among others vpod’s service will soon allow Treonauts to edit, send and publish any video footage shot on their Treo directly from their Treo as well as to view any one of the thousands of videos available on their website thanks to the new streaming capabilities found on the Treo 700p.

Rebtel is a digital telecommunications service provider which aims to significantly reduce international mobile calling charges by offering you local calling numbers that you can use to call any colleagues or friends abroad.  Rebtel’s service is not yet fully live but you can test it now with 3 minutes free calling.

EQO has built an application which allows Treo 650 and Treo 700p owners to engage in IM conversations and make calls via Skype on your Treo.  I had tested EQO a few weeks ago but did not write a full review because although it works well I found it too complex to install and use.  However, after a long demo and conversation with the company’s CEO I will definitely give it another try shortly.

Skype was not strictly speaking one of the companies at the event but having recently sold to ebay for some $4.0 billion Niklas Zennström, founder and CEO, was a speaker at the conference as one of the leading current European entrepreneurs. 

Among others he reiterated the importance that Skype is placing on “mobile VoIP” and how he intends his company to be at the forefront of these developments.  A mobile version of Skype is already available for Windows Mobile but unfortunately not for the PalmOS.  In private I asked Niklas if he would consider making strides on the PalmOS front and he assured me that he would follow-up with his development team to look at the possibilities and “see what we can do” – he seemed genuinely interested after I outlined some of the most recent Treonauts stories.

Finally, below are some pictures of Innovate! Europe’s closing reception which was held at the absolutely stunning moorish Palacio de la Aljaferia which is considered to be one of the most important monuments of its time.  The palace was recently completely refurbished and now houses the regional Parliament of Aragon.


Treonauts are always seeking innovation

Posted by Andrew on May 19, 2006 at 11:00 AM

Treo News

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» Jamón, Jamón from Peer Pressure
We got back last night from Innovate!Europe. Having worked in the software industry in Europe for the past 15 years (and as an entrepreneur for the past eight), Ive been frustrated frequently by the lack of respect accorded to European technolog... [Read More]

Tracked on May 19, 2006 1:07:27 PM

» European startups display their wares in Zaragoza from VC Ratings
European dealmakers are returning home after attending a three-day conference in Zaragoza that considered how the Continent's innovation ecosystem can be strengthened. I was there to moderate a panel last year and it was a good place to learn about ne... [Read More]

Tracked on May 19, 2006 3:23:44 PM


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