10 Hot Internet of Things Startups

As Internet connectivity gets embedded into every aspect of our lives, investors, entrepreneurs and engineers are rushing to cash in. Here are 10 hot startups that are poised to shape the future of the Internet of Things (IoT).

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6. Neura

neura

What they do: Neura's goal is to become the "glue connecting the Internet of Things" by developing an open platform that bridges objects, locations, people and the Web.

Headquarters: Sunnyvale, Calif.

CEO: Gilad Meiri. Meiri previously co-founded and served as CEO of Spicebox.

Founded: 2013

Funding: In April 2014, Neura secured $2 million in funding, led by Greenhouse Capital Partners, alongside SingTel Innov8 Ventures, Pitango Venture Capital, TriplePoint Ventures and prominent angel investors, including Ben Narasin and Isaac Applbaum.

Why they're on this list: Finding good programmers and developers is a struggle for many businesses. Neura argues that for IoT to gain mass relevance, we'll need either a heck of a lot more programmers or some sort of shortcut to sidestep this bottleneck.

Neura believes that devices and device ecosystems need to "understand the human." Smart devices will need to learn when to suggest and respond to prompts, as well as figuring out how to allow the user to opt into certain actions, rather than having prompts and triggers set in stone (well, code).

Neura does two things to help devices "understand the human." First, Neura's platform offers a way for an individual's devices to communicate with one another. More importantly, Neura helps a person's devices understand context (where, when, with whom), semantic (what does this mean) and pattern behavior.

By combining these streams of data, devices could eventually have predictive features and will be able to respond to an individual's daily activity. For example, after a user spends time in the kitchen and then leaves home, Neura will make sure the oven is shut down. Neura can prompt a vacuum cleaner to work harder after multiple people have visited your home. Or if a user comes back from a run in the park, Neura can allow the user's connected glucometer to have access to their activity, sleep and blood pressure information.

Neura says that it can also help smart devices understand how contextual elements, such as jet-lag and weather, impact human factors, such as blood glucose.

Competitive Landscape: Google is Neura's most direct competitors. There are plenty of other company's dealing with AI, machine learning and M2M communications. Neura argues that most solutions deal only with connectivity. At Neura, the focus is on data applications. "Creating device-oriented cognition in consumer-facing scenarios is a relatively new problem that the market is trying to tackle," a spokesperson said.

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