The Microsoft Accelerator program, supported by Techstars, was started after Microsoft saw that countless KinectHackers out there were making amazing uses for their motion-gaming device that they haven’t even thought of. When the program was launched, Microsoft was only expecting a handful of applications but ended up getting more than 500 from over 60 countries. Out of these 500 applications, 11 were chosen to become part of the inaugural program and last Thursday, July 28th, these 11 visionaries were given the opportunity to present their projects to the media, venture capitalists and potential investors.
Each team was given 7 minutes to tell the audience who they are and what they’ve accomplished in the past 3 months. The participants did not disappoint by presenting a wide range of Kinect-based solutions that aim to address different needs in healthcare, entertainment and retail. Almost all of these projects already have a waiting customer base or have already secured funding.
Here’s a quick rundown of what was showcased at the event:
Jintronix shared an app that tracks a patient in rehab’s physical movements and transmits that information back to their healthcare provider.
Kimetric created a tool for stores that uses the Kinect to capture data about their shoppers such as height, weight, emotion, etc. Stores can then use the data to better understand their customers and tailor-fit their store to address their wants and needs.
Zebcare focused on designing a app that aims to monitor seniors but in a more private way than video monitoring.
Manctl produced 3-D scanning sofware solutions with potential applications in games, 3-D modeling and printing.
IKKOS is a Seattle-based start up that is finding ways to incorporate the Kinect in its training programs for athletes.
Styku shared a fashion app that will allow users to scan their bodies and try on recommended outfits from retailers.
Ubi used the Kinect to turn practically any surface into a touch screen.
NConnex has created a tool that will allow you to scan your room and virtually try out furniture from retailers in a 3D environment before making a purchase.
Voxon is creating tools for volumetric movie capture and display, hoping that it becomes the foundation of a whole new field of 3D movies or “Voxons.”
GestSure is perhaps one of the more well known participants. Their contribution is a tool that surgeons can use to navigate MRI and CT scans in the operating room using nothing but simple gestures.
Freak’N Genius has created a fun and simple animation tool that allows people to animate characters using the Kinect’s voice and motion capture capabilities
Speaking with Geekwire, Techstars CEO David Cohen expressed his amazement at what the Microsoft Accelerators have accomplished in the 90 day program:
“Across the board they’ve come a long way they’ve come a long way. It’s just been 90 days. The group is so bonded. I went to a dinner last night, and they’re all standing up, very emotional about this being their last dinner together. Talking about reunions. It’s become a peer group, which is one of the things we try to accomplish. In terms of the business, you’ve got some real businesses here. As an investor that has a fund outside the context of TechStars, I’m looking at some of these businesses for my fund. That’s the goal, to see interesting business come out of it. They won’t all be successful, but I think a lot of them have a pretty good shot.”
For those interested to learn more about the Microsoft Kinect Accelerator program, be sure to visit their website using the link we’ve provided below.