3 startups that want to make your life easier

Think Silicon Valley startups are way too focused on Web apps? Incubator Y Combinator's latest crop of 70 new ventures included a batch of hardware innovators. Here are three of our favorites.


Kyle Azevedo, Sid Doshi and Yuriy Romaniw

Funding: $150,000 from Y Combinator + $50,000 from Village Capital
Headquarters: Atlanta
Founders: Kyle Azevedo, Sid Doshi, Koji Intlekofer, Yuriy Romaniw

If you can rent a car on the fly, why can't you rent a bike the same way? Enter viaCycle, essentially a Zipcar (ZIP) for bike model.

ViaCycle's website and mobile app will steer you to locations where bikes are available. The bikes' automated locks can be opened by texting the bicycle ID, calling, or using viaCycle's app. Pricing is still being fine-tuned, but viaCycle's founders estimate that it will run around $20 a month or $80 a year for unlimited rentals.

The service was built by a group of Georgia Tech engineering grads and has already launched on the university's campus. It will soon spread to George Mason University and to a pilot program in San Francisco. All of the bikes are tracked with GPS, which the crew hopes will prevent theft.

"It's a cheap, easy way to get around," says co-founder Kyle Azeved. "In a lot of places it's easier than taking a car, and for these cities and universities, it's a great deal compared to building a parking lot or providing a shuttle."

  @LaurieSegallCNN - Last updated August 23 2012 09:27 AM ET

Partner Offers

Most Popular