So what’s next in mobile? We wanted to find out, so earlier this year we launched the 30 to Watch in Mobile. We asked the most ambitious UK firms in the mobile sector to tell us their business plans, to brag about their products and try and convince our elite judging panel that they had the potential to shake up the world of mobile.
And what did we find?
In a nutshell: a smörgåsbord of talent.
Take the annoying issue of cracked screens. How many iPhones have you seen with a broken screen? It’s insane. So we were delighted to discover Tech21 Impactology, a polymer research firm which is using bulletproof glass technology to reinforce screens. The glue-free screen protector looks similar to cheap Chinese versions, but has some serious performance advantages. Yeah, at £20 its a bit pricier, but we can’t think of an iPhone user who wouldn’t want one. In the US alone we are talking about a billion pound market.
Another 30 to Watch member has caught the eye of Roman Abramovich, who spent £70m on a quarter of the shares. Another is shaking up the fashion industry (check it out: Snap Fashion).
Mobile payments is a red hot sector right now. The 30 to Watch has a handful of major players: Monitise, Judo Payments, Paddle and ValidSoft.
Augmented-reality is another star in the making. Kudan’s app which turns cereal boxes into a DJ’s mixing desk might sound silly, but the commercial implications of this sort of tech are simply mind-blowing.
Before you plunge to the full list we must thank our panel of expert judges, who each brought a remarkable degree of knowledge to the endeavour. They are:
Mark Pearson – Founder of MyVoucherCodes.co.uk and former CBI/Real Business Growing Business Awards Young Entrepreneur of the Year
Adrian Bott – Head of digital business at Osborne Clark
Vanessa Zainzinger – Editor of RealBusiness.co.uk
Stuart Rock – Founder of Caspian Publishing
Charles Orton-Jones – Former PPA Business Journalist of the Year, former editor of EuroBusiness magazine
Colin Stevens – Founder of Better Bathrooms, current CBI/ Real Business Growing Business Awards Entrepreneur of the Year
Here are the results of the 2013 Real Business 30 to Watch in Mobile. Congratulations to every firm that made it.
- ILG Business Ltd.
- Judo Payments*
- Tech21 Impactology*
- Mobilize Systems
- Somethin’ Else
- Blackbelt Smartphone Defence
- Contact Group
- ECR Retail Systems
- Snap Fashion*
- Capito Systems
* = Highly Commended