TechCrunch40 Day 1: 5 Startup Picks

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TechCrunch40Day one of TechCrunch40 was today. A number of major announcements were made, not to mention the twenty startup demos/launches that took place. Here’s our 5 startup picks from the numerous ones that presented today (in no specific order; these aren’t necessarily the best either – they just stood out):

TripIt (our writeup)As James writes, Initially, when I first visited Tripit, I came away thinking that these guys were really going to struggle as they didn?t seem to offer anything that special. I immediately thought, “Oh yeah, another orbitz”. But I took some time to watch their demo and it became very clear to me that these guys have identified a potential niche leveraging the web 2.0 revolution- trip planning.”

AOL’s BlueString (our writeup) – As I wrote, “A lot of times, mediocre products and attempts like these from the bigger companies never manage to get anywhere. Unless BlueString can prove itself by having a robust platform and an open architecture since no one wants to re-upload stuff (and the stuff they do want to share and create memories of is most probably already somewhere on the Internet), I don?t see them going far with it.”

Docstoc (our writeup) – As Jason writes, “I think docstoc looks very interesting and it?s focus on professional documents is what excites me. I know I have spent countless hours looking for documents I need for business. Usually you find crappy documents or sites that try to get you to pay for the document (which is not necessarily bad as I have paid lawyers to create document’s for me).”

CastTV – From their homepage, “CastTV is working to build the web’s best video search. We want to give you the best way to find all your online videos, from movies to TV shows to the latest celebrity, sports, news, and viral videos. We’ll take you to those videos, wherever they are.” Video search is a field on the web that is yet to be perfected in my opinion. Google Video‘s good with the fact that they index various sources, but they’re definitely not the best. CastTV has a huge opportunity if they can get it right.

Cubic Telecom – This one’s a little hard to explain, so again, I’m best to quote their What We Do page. “Cubic Telecom is dedicated to a world where anyone, anywhere can use a mobile phone to call anyone in any country for as long as he or she wants without worrying about price.” They offer a handset, a global Wi-Fi network of partners, and their own sim-cards that give you super-cheap prices when you’re not around the wi-fi networks. Will they be able to do it?


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