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The Olympics aren’t the only exciting event London is hosting this year! MAW London kicked off today with sunny skies and a great lineup of startups. The participants arrived early this morning ready to tackle an exciting week at MAW.

Brian Hoskins kicked off with the morning session, welcoming the startups and setting agenda and goals for the week. Hoskins discussed the MAW program gives, which include featured placement in Marketplace, special support from Microsoft Advertising, free phones, and tools from Microsoft BizSpark. The companies were then introduced to iLink Systems and Motivity Labs who will be assisting in the coding throughout the week. The participants also had a chance to introduce themselves, their companies, and their app idea to the crowd.

Attentive Participants

Dave Crawford, guru of all things Metro UI, then delivered a session on Windows Phone UI/UX, providing an overview of the platform, specifics of what makes a great app, and tips for startups starting out on the platform. Following the session, the startups took a lunch break and had some informal networking time.

Dave Crawford’s Session

In the afternoon, the startups had time to set up consulting sessions with Motivity and iLink to discuss their development needs and project plan for the week.  As part of MAW, Microsoft is providing an additional week of development support after the event is over. Along with Brian Hoskins, other members of Team Microsoft included Bindi Karia, VC/Emerging Business lead for the UK. Microsoft representatives were on-hand to support with business and technical questions throughout the day.

The startups at this event are getting up to speed quickly on the platform. All seven of the startups are BizSpark members and have used the tools before. Some are new to Windows Phone but had excellent questions about the current release, as well as the upcoming Windows 8 tablet release and Windows Phone 8. WP8 will include key developer features, such as support for native code, improved multi-tasking and location notifications, as well as support for NFC and mobile wallet.

Participants Hard at Work

1:1 business consulting sessions started earlier than usual this week. Today, Brian met with Base CRM, a Chicago and Poland-based startup building a mobile-first CRM system. Base plans to integrate internal and external customer information in an easier way for today’s mobile work force, a major pain point for small and medium businesses. One of the coolest features they is their “Sync Service” which allows people to work with their CRM locally on the phone, without the need for a data connection. According to Base, this has been a common struggle for their customers. Base recently raised a $6.8M Series B round led by Index Ventures, along with Social + Capital Partnership, OCA Ventures, and the I2A Fund. Since the beginning of the year, the company grew its users by more than 500 percent and is being used by tens of thousands of businesses worldwide. Base’s progress to date was especially impressive. They have already built a working prototype and plan to release their app to Marketplace in the next two weeks. Mobile business apps have been an underinvested area in mobile, so keep an eye on this company as they have an opportunity to disrupt the current way people think about mobile CRM today.

1:1 with Base CRM

Everyone is looking forward to day two of MAW London which will bring more development sessions and 1:1 consulting. Check back tomorrow for a day two update or Twitter for the most updated info.

MAW kicks off in London on Monday with another awesome group of startups joining the event. Once again, the diversity of the participants is outstanding. The companies range from an archiving service to a home cooking app to a video surveillance company. This is a small but mighty group of participants who are looking forward to a week packed full of development, consulting, and presentations. Make sure to check out this week’s participants:

archify

archify is a ground-breaking new service created to tackle the information overload crisis. archify archives everything you see on the web or in your social stream (Facebook, Twitter etc) – then lets you search it quickly. The tool is seamlessly integrated into most browsers and runs automatically, so there’s no need to bookmark or manually save information.

 Whisk 

Whisk revolutionizes home cooking. Whisk makes it simple for a user to take any recipe they find on the Internet, tailor it to their tastes and needs and then purchase the ingredients they need, either in store or via online supermarkets. The mobile application will allow a user to manage their home cooking experience from their mobile devices. This includes finding and bookmarking recipes, creating shopping lists, viewing previously created shopping lists as well as checking out their shopping list via online supermarkets.

Milestone Systems Bulgaria Ltd.

Milestone Systems is an international company that sells video surveillance management software in many countries around the world. The Milestone Systems platform is used to ensure greater safety and security for people, products and assets, to help manage environmental issues, and to optimize business processes.

Frootfal Media

Frootfal provides consumers with a simply more rewarding online shopping experience. Available to members who buy online using PCs, Laptops, Tablets or Smartphones, the service provides a seamless, secure and non‐intrusive way for smart people to shop and earn great rewards using any device, anywhere, anytime. The Frootfal App provides the user with a secure, easy to use online shopping experience.  The App is design led, providing intuitive ease of use, cross platform familiarity and simplicity whilst having that ‘cool’ feel.

Base

Base was founded in 2009 by Uzi Shmilovici, Pawel Niznik, Bart Kiszala, Ela Madej and Agata Mazur. Everyone has found it unbelievably hard to find great software products that will help people manage small businesses. Base aims to build the next generation of CRM to make millions of people more productive.

Blue Butterfly

Blue Butterfly was founded with a simple goal: to make wireless connectivity easier than ever. Founded in Norwich in 2012, the company has gone from two guys with an audacious idea to a growing team working on a revolutionary product that will change the wireless industry.

                  Hailo Cab

Use Hailo to get a black cab wherever you are, whenever you want. All it takes is two taps on your iPhone or AndroidPhone. Pay cash or card, with no charges above the meter. Hailo Cab has raised $20M from an all star cast of investors including Accel Partners, Wellington Partners, and Atomico Ventures.

Needless to say, we have a great lineup for the week! As always, the event will be streamed live via Twitter. If Mobile Acceleration Week sounds interesting to you or someone you know, don’t forget to apply. Find out more about the application process here or on the MAW homepage.

Guest post by Vizibility. Vizibility is currently working on a mobile app, is a member of the BizSpark program, and was featured as a BizSpark Startup of the Day

Companies are tired of being held hostage by search engine results. During the next decade, one of the fastest-growing challenges facing organizations will be managing and tracking the online identities of their professionals. Organizations face serious economic consequences when their people cannot be found online… or when what’s found isn’t accurate. Organizations are starting to reject the notion that ‘you are who search engines say you are’ by instead pro-actively curating, packaging and distributing rich online content about their people.

Vizibility helps organizations control, share and track the professional online presence for their people to make an accurate, powerful and lasting impression. The hub of Vizibility’s solution is the Mobile Business Card, a unique mobile micro-site for each person in an organization.

Built on .NET, Vizibility delivers the world’s first enterprise-ready online identity management platform, offering a complete line of identity management tools designed to help individuals and enterprises optimize their online presence for mobile viewing, control search results, and enable mobile networking and information exchange.

Vizibility leverages personal QR codes, NFC mobile wallet cards, Microsoft Tags, and SearchMeTM buttons and links that instantly lead people looking for information about someone to that person’s hand-picked Google search results, online bios, videos, portfolios or other user-defined content. Hand-picked Bing results are coming soon.

Vizibility gives individual users and enterprise admins the tools and business intelligence analytics they need to track and manage online identity-related activities, including alerts and geo tracking capabilities to let users know when they have been scanned or searched, and the interested party’s organization name, organization type and location. The company provides personal search results monitoring tools to track changes in page rankings, and personal Google AdWords campaigns to optimize results.

With hundreds of millions of smartphones in use worldwide and about half of all searches now originating on a mobile device, Vizibility is committed to delivering the tools users need to make a killer first impression in the mobile space, including mobile-optimized microsites and wireless mobile information exchange capabilities. The Vizibility team is proud to be a part of the BizSpark Program and welcomes feedback and suggestions.

Web: http://vizibility.com/

Twitter: http://twitter.com/getvizibility

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/vizibility

Blog: http://blog.vizibility.com

MAW is a trend setter! The MAW Bangalore event was such a success, that two similar events were hosted in India to meet the high demand from developers. Two “Windows Phone Application Acceleration Week” events were held over the past couple weeks in both Pune and Delhi with 39 companies participating. The events attracted attendees from very high potential Windows Phone developers and made quite a media splash. Along with Microsoft employees, Nokia and iLink representatives were on hand just like a typical MAW event.

The two events featured similar activities from MAW Bangalore: one-on-one consulting sessions, workshops, troubleshooting help, and development time. The participants were assisted in their Windows Phone app development as well as encouraged about creating Windows 8 applications. The week’s schedule also included the following diverse sessions:

  • Windows Phone platform and application development overview
  • UI UX Metro design guidelines
  • Windows Phone application lifecycle and state management
  • App makeover – Applying Metro style and best practices
  • Windows Phone app performance analysis
  • Optimizing Windows Phone app
  • Windows Phone Marketplace and app monetization
  • Windows Phone app publishing tips and appvertize
  • Introduction to Windows 8 platform
  • Migrate/port a Windows Phone app to Metro style Windows 8 app

The week finished with a “Demo Day,” similar to the final day of MAW Bangalore. At “Demo Day,” the attendees had a chance to pitch their company and idea as well as demo their app they developed throughout the week. In all, these two additional development weeks were a huge success. But, don’t just take that from us, read some of the great reviews from participants:

  • “Being fairly new to the Windows Phone platform, the exposure to design/development environment really gives a good starting point going ahead in the field. The understanding in Metro UI is a very important part in the Windows development platform and is quite helpful going ahead.”
  • “I am really glad that we got the opportunity to be part of such a great initiative by Microsoft and personally will make sure that the quality expected from WP in terms of design is maintained from my end.”
  • “The experience was good. There was a lot to learn. All the people from Microsoft, as well as iLink were quite helpful. It was great to know how we can work on UI and UX and how to incorporate Metro design-pivot, and panorama even in gaming apps.”
  • “It was good to get feedback on both positive and negative aspects of our apps. We will work on our apps and use everything we have learned here.”

Windows Phone Application Acceleration Week

The MAW team packs their bags and heads to London June 25-29. As always, the event will be streamed live via Twitter. If Mobile Acceleration Week sounds interesting to you or someone you know, don’t forget to apply. Find out more about the application process here or on the MAW homepage.

MAW is on a roll! Look at all these MAW alumni making news headlines:

The MAW team packs their bags and heads to London June 25-29. As always, the event will be streamed live via Twitter. If Mobile Acceleration Week sounds interesting to you or someone you know, don’t forget to apply. Find out more about the application process here or on the MAW homepage.

MAW is making a media splash! Just check out some of out great MAW alum in the news:

  • Soundtracker, a free online music streaming service, attended MAW in New York City last fall. Daniele Calabrese, the founder and CEO of the company, was recently featured by Nokia’s developer program on Youtube.
  • The location-based application, Echoecho, was chosen to present at Mobile World Congress. The company was chosen at the AppCircus event in London to be a part of the Mobile Premier Awards. Echoecho participated in MAW San Francisco.
  • Rdio is making quite a media splash with their recent expansion into Germany, Australia, Spain, and Portugal. COO, Carter Adamson, recently gave an interview about the expansion into Australia. Rdio is a subscription based stream music service that attended MAW in San Francisco.
  • Media Friends, a social hub that empowers consumers to text across multiple platforms, released a Windows Phone app. The app, Heywire, garnered media attention and a large number of downloads within the first day. Media Friends came to the MAW event in New York City.
  • Nine MAW startups were chosen as great new apps by Wired. The list included: Stitcher, Skedi, News 360, News Republic, WNM Live, inTooch, CitySourced, Echoecho, and Rdio.
  • DoAt, a mobile-optimized search application, attended MAW in Israel. The company recently launched a beta version of Everything.me, or “the everything project.” The goal is to build a mobile app that give consumers access to whatever they want instantly.
  • News360 recently released an update to their popular app on Marketplace. In a recent interview, CEO Roman Karachinsky said the updated app has a more simplistic look than it does on other platforms. The company also made news as the first Russian-based company to publish an app for the Windows 8 preview.
  • Mobiles Republic, a San Francisco MAW company, published a Windows 8 app for preview. The app, News Republic , allows users to personalize and build their own news channels. The company also recently closed an impressive $3 million Series A funding round.

The MAW team packs their bags and heads to London June 25-29. As always, the event will be streamed live via Twitter. If Mobile Acceleration Week sounds interesting to you or someone you know, don’t forget to apply. Find out more about the application process here or on the MAW homepage.

MAW concluded another successful event today in Berlin. After a day of prepping yesterday, the startups arrived early this morning for MAW’s signature Demo Day event. Demo Day offers an opportunity for the startups to showcase their company and work they’ve done over the week. This day has been an essential part of MAW around the world and is exciting for us and the startups alike. Today’s Demo Day was no different with the 13 MAW Berlin companies taking the stage.

Brian Hoskins, Strategic and Emerging Business Team (SEBT) at Microsoft, and Tom Halabi, SEBT at Microsoft, kicked off the day with a short presentation. Brian and Tom discussed the program benefits and how to take advantage of the gives post-MAW. Many MAW alumni have already taken advantage of the great marketing opportunities such as a Bizspark Startup of the Day spotlight or Marketplace feature. Following the presentation, the startups spent this morning putting the finishing touches on their apps and prepping for the afternoon presentations.

Final prep time

After lunch, the presentations kicked off. There was a great group of companies attending the event, ranging from consumer to enterprise apps. Each startup presented for 10-15 minutes on the company, market, and application. Each presentation included a live demo of a Windows Phone app.

Kodira pitches their app, Tourschall

After much deliberation, the judges reached a decision. It was a tight competition given the strength of the teams. The winners are:

First place:

Second place:

Third place:

The first and second place teams walked away with XBOX Kinect sets, with the third place taking home stereo headsets for their Nokia Lumia phones. The MAW team was highly impressed with the quality of startups and active entrepreneur scene in Germany and Berlin. A big congratulations to all participants for an outstanding job this week!

The MAW team packs their bags and heads to London June 25-29. As always, the event will be streamed live via Twitter. If Mobile Acceleration Week sounds interesting to you or someone you know, don’t forget to apply. Find out more about the application process here or on the MAW homepage.

After a successful day two, the startups woke up this morning to some cooler weather and a light drizzle in Berlin which is perfect weather for building apps! Today was spent preparing for tomorrow’s Demo Day. The startups spent the morning putting the finishing touches on their beta apps. Together with representatives from Motivity and iLink, the companies have made some outstanding progress this week. There are already some pretty advanced applications up and running after just a few days’ development time.

Morning work

Just before lunch, MAW welcomed special guest, Dailyme.TV, a very successful Windows Phone app in Germany and BizSpark company. Dailyme talked about their experiences on the platform, providing advice and tips on development as well as their experiences with the product launch. The company has seen over 15,000 downloads since their release in late March and is off to a strong start. After seeing the MAW startups’ progress this week, we’re confident these companies will see the same success when they release. The Dailyme.tv team members shared their thoughts on Windows Phone:

  • “Compared to our development of our iPhone and iPad apps, working on Windows Phone and Windows 8 took way less time and was easier to release.  Microsoft’s support and tools made a big difference.”
  • “If you don’t have Live Tiles, your customers won’t love you.”

The Dailyme.TV team

Post-lunch, we welcomed Hanne Jungclau from Faktor 3 PR agency. Historically, many startups have needed assistance in this area. MAW makes this session a priority. Representatives from Faktor 3 met with each startup individually to work through launch plans and PR strategies throughout the afternoon. The rest of the time, startups worked on their pitches and apps for Demo Day tomorrow.

Afternoon development

The day finished off with a networking dinner with the startups, Nokia, Nokia Growth Partners, and other industry partners. The dinner gave everyone the opportunity to talk more about their app development, Windows Phone, and the mobile phone industry as a whole.

It’s been an incredible week so far. Tomorrow promises to be an exciting conclusion to the event. We look forward to the pitches and demos tomorrow at Demo Day. Good luck to all the startups!

Check back for more updates on MAW Berlin or stay tuned to Twitter for updates throughout the day. You can also find more general information about MAW on the homepage and application information here.

Rise and shine, Berlin! After a busy first day, the startups arrived this morning ready to rock and roll with morning code drops from our offshore developers. Many participants have commented on the great location of this week’s MAW events held at Microsoft’s Berlin offices. The building is right across the street from the famous Berlin Zoo, which has provided some great background noise throughout the event. There was some early excitement today as several of our startups and MAW were featured in the Huffington Post– yet some more much deserved media coverage for MAW!

The morning started with some more unstructured development time for the companies. Even after a long night of work last night, the developers were eager to get back to work this morning. Following the development time, the content section of the day began. Oliver Scheer, Microsoft Deutschland GmbH, kicked off the day with a presentation on UI/UX and mobile development. This lecture has been a staple at the past events, and always proves to be useful for the attendees. Following the presentation, the companies attended a networking lunch with developers, Nokia, and Nokia Growth Partners. This was a great opportunity for the startups to make contacts and discuss their app development progress.

Networking lunch

On the heels of a successful lunch, Christian Schepke, Manager of Ecosystem and Developer Experience at Nokia, took the stage. Christian presented on partnership opportunities with Nokia and shared some numbers about Nokia’s shipments and momentum with Windows Phone. Christian then handed over the microphone to Walter Masalin, Nokia Growth Partners’ Berlin office. Walter presented on the VC firm and how to structure a funding pitch. Brian Hoskins, Strategic adn Emerging Business Team at Microsoft, then discussed the availability of application development grants from Microsoft and Nokia’s joint fund with Aalto University.

Presentation time

Brian then took the stage for a presentation on Marketplace and Monetization. This session is another staple at MAW events, and one that participants always find useful for how to think about launching their applications. Brian discussed ways to increase downloads and user engagement with the unique capabilities of Windows Phone, including App Connect, Live Tiles and Marketplace merchandising.  He also shared the top six ways to increase monetization on the platform, as well as the key ways to build a great application and what the Marketplace team looks for to feature an app. The content part of the day finished off with a Q&A session on technical and business questions for the startups.

Brian presents on Marketplace monetizing

The day concluded with a pizza dinner as startups continued into the night working on their apps. Many have already developed working beta versions in just two days, which means demo day will be another exciting one. Tomorrow promises to be another busy day with PR and Marketing training, partner showcase with dailyme.tv, as well as the MAW networking dinner.

Check back for more updates on MAW Berlin or stay tuned to Twitter for updates throughout the day.  You can also find more general information about MAW on the homepage and application information here.

MAW kicked off in Berlin today. And, with 15 great startups in attendance, it is sure to be a successful week. The participants have come from all over Germany, including Berlin, Hamburg, Dresden, Leipzig, Munich, Cologne, and Dusseldorf. The startups represent a diverse group of companies, from location based services to mobile payments and productivity apps. The MAW team is excited to be in Berlin because the city is rapidly becoming not just the political capital of Germany but also the startup capital. Berlin has a vibrant tech and startup scene, which makes it an ideal place to host MAW.

Welcome to MAW Berlin

Following a morning registration and breakfast, the day started off with a kickoff presentation by Brian Hoskins, Strategic and Emerging Business Team at Microsoft. Brian welcomed the startups and gave a general overview of the week’s schedule. The attendees had an opportunity to introduce themselves and get acquainted with one another. The participants were introduced to the representatives from Motivity Labs and iLink who will be assisting the startups in development throughout the week.

Kickoff session

Kai Jäger, Microsoft Deutschland GmbH, closed out the morning with a presentation. Kai gave a technical overview session on Windows Phone and phone SDK.  While many companies are familiar with the Windows Phone platform, Kai’s presentation served as a good reminder for everyone. The companies then took a break for lunch to network and discuss the morning sessions.

Kai Jäger takes the stage

The afternoon was devoted to app development. The startups attended 1:1 consulting sessions with Motivity and iLink, beginning to formulate ideas and designs for their apps. Microsoft employees were on hand to support and advise on app development. This development time is important to the startups as they prepare for Demo Day later this week.

Development time

After a break for dinner, many startups continued into the evening, prepping for a busy day tomorrow.  Tomorrow’s focus will be on content, including UI, partnering with Nokia and Windows Phone, and Marketplace and Monetization.

Check back for more updates on MAW Berlin or stay tuned to Twitter for updates throughout the day.  You can also find more general information about MAW on the homepage and application information here.

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