They say you’re supposed to save the best for last, and Tuesday night at the first-ever Seattle Tech Meetup was no different.
After four local tech startups pitched their impressive ideas, Zumobi co-founder John SanGiovanni took the cake for the final demo. For a few minutes on stage, he made magic happen on the screen and at one point stood up on two wooden chairs when describing his company’s premium app mobile network.
Tuesday night at the HUB Seattle marked the inaugural Seattle Tech Meetup, a brand new tech-focused event started by Brett Greene of Fresh Consulting and Red Russak of Startup Seattle. The event will be held on the third Tuesday of every month.
After some eating, drinking and networking, five startups had five minutes to demo their product. My favorite was Zumobi, partly because of the presentation and partly because of the concept.
Zumobi’s business is built on creating rich advertising content that actually enhances the mobile experience rather than detract from it. To show how it works, SanGiovanni stood on two chairs so he could start “touching” the iPhone up on the screen.
“This is the part where I actually risk life and limb for the sake of a novel presentation,” SanGiovanni joked.
The impressive part was that it looked like he was actually “controlling” the iPhone on the projector screen as he demoed Zumobi’s platform, “touching” different buttons and swiping here and there. In reality, every time he “pushed” a button on the projected iPhone with his right hand, he was also clicking through “slides” with his left hand that corresponded with each button “push.”
“This is all set up,” SanGiovanni admitted to the crowd as he drew oohs and aahs. The video above a better visual example.
Talk to the Manager came a close second in my book. The service allows customers to send anonymous comments to businesses by text message. Co-founder Jeremy Luby demoed his product by giving the audience a phone number to text and displayed the responses — some hilarious, some a little profane — on the screen.
The other three startups all had interesting stuff. Jeff MacDuff talked about Buddy‘s cross-platform mobile “backend as a server,” Grant Feek discussed how Tred allows customers to test drive cars from their homes and Susie Kroll demoed her babysitting app Tonightish.
On the video above, here are the starting times for each pitch:
0:10 — Tonightish
4:40 — Talk to the Manager
9:55 — Tred
14:43 — Buddy.com
20:00 — Zumobi
If you’re interesting in demoing your product, head here to fill out this application. Here are a few Tweets from the event:
— Christina Elsberry (@Chaus23) February 20, 2013
Beer, brains, and bold innovations at #stmeetup
— Sam Kelly, Jr. (@SLANG_MEDIA) February 20, 2013
Great to be at #stmeetup and listening to great presentations. Well done!
— Enrique Godreau III (@enriquegodreau) February 20, 2013