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6 startups from CES to watch in 2017

Barbara Krasnoff | Jan. 19, 2017
The Eureka Park area at the CES trade show offered startups a chance to show what they can do.

The Hololamp, says Jay, has excited a lot of interest among developers. "I was talking to somebody who runs services for doctors, and he said wouldn't it be great if, when you went in to talk to your doctor, they could actually have a 3D model of your heart in front of them."

He adds that the Hololamp is about eight weeks from the point "where we'll have something we can show people to buy." The company is planning a crowdfunding campaign aimed at developers; he expects the initial price of the developer unit to be around $1,000.

Mymanu Clik

Wireless earbuds that enable language translation 

Danny Manu is an audio engineer who got the idea for his earbuds at a conference in Germany. "The person who was speaking to us was speaking in German, and none of us could understand it. There's 20 engineers, all from different parts of Europe; we don't speak German and we had to get 20 translators." The brainchild of that experience is a set of wireless earbuds called Mymanu Clik.

With the help of Enterprise Europe and other mentoring services, Manu put together a team to develop a set of earbuds and apps that would offer both high-quality audio and real-time translation services. The idea is that, using the app, you choose which language you want to hear, while the person on the other end of the line chooses the language they want to hear. The app, combined with the technology in the earbuds, allows close to real-time translation. "The system needs to recognize a sentence before it starts translating," Manu explains. "Once the system recognizes a sentence, it starts translating."

Developing this type of product is, as he discovered, not an easy task, especially when you factor in different dialects and accents. "We were doing a prototype in Arabic," he remembers, "and did some of the testing in Dubai. We'd spent months developing an Arabic translation system, but when we got to Dubai, the system wasn't working perfectly, and we were really worried. It was working in England -- how come it wasn't working here? Then we realized that there are so many different versions of Arabic, and our system was developed for Classical Arabic. When we identified that option" and the testers knew which version of the language they had to use, "the system worked perfectly."

The Mymanu Clik currently works with 37 languages, including language forms such as American or British English. It is in pre-order for US$199, and delivery is estimated for May 2017.

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