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Start-ups along for ride

Need a ride? Sharing rides is not new but the By The Way carpooling application reinterprets the idea.

As people who are in the same neighborhood share taxi and car rides, "community" is redefined with the feature of social networking.

The app has been downloaded more than 4,000 times since its launch in July. The community-based app sprouted in the Tai Po neighborhood Facebook group last year.

The app is now targeting more distant places such as the Science Park, allowing users to travel by shuttle buses.

Its chief marketing officer, Vince Leung Yat-kit, is now hoping to attract more advertisers and increase the number of active users to 100,000 by the end of this year.

About 250 start-ups have joined as incubatees of the Hong Kong Science and Technology Park. Head of incubation programs Peter Mok Wai-hin said its role is to provide the start-ups with assistance.

One start-up, Platysens, is now seeing progress in its development. Its main product is Marlin, a pioneer GPS swim meter design, that guides a swimmer through voice feedback using a bone conduction headset.

Founder Wong Cheong-yui said that as a swimmer himself he has found Marlin really useful, especially when navigating in open water.

They are now raising funds on Kickstarter to support the production. Over half of the HK$22,000 target has been raised in two weeks.

The mobile music game application developer C4Cat is another incubatee of the Hong Kong Science and Technology Park.

The Dynamix game, which uses local indie music, has had millions of downloads and is starting to earn money.

Tab Tsang Ka-chun, CEO of the start-up, said: "Most of the local market is currently occupied by companies in Japan and South Korea, so we hope to turn things around."

It has gained popularity among Japanese and Korean users.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016
Media Name: 
The Standard 英文虎報