The Corona pandemic has got start-ups all excited and they are going full on to launch their products and solutions. Not sure how many are still a work-in-progress. The much maligned word ‘jugaad’ defined positively as ‘a frugal innovation mindset to find hacks to problems with limited resources’ is also in full flow.
The nature of the pandemic was such that start-ups had to use all their resources to get their products/solutions across. The ecosystem that enables these to move quickly for testing and for use is still very slow. There were clear winners as well.
The Department of Science and Technology has set up a task force to map technologies developed by start-ups related to COVID-19. It is also funding start-ups to develop relevant innovations such as rapid testing for the virus.
Here’s a short list of start-up innovations that are now being used across India to support the Covid-19 fighting effort:
- Asimov Robotics, a start-up based in Kerala, has deployed robots at entrances to office buildings
- Set which uses GPS and Bluetooth to inform people when they are at risk of exposure to COVID-19.
- KlinicApp and Practo, are providing COVID-19 tests at home and online consultation with doctors
- Aerobiosys Innovations (incubated at IIT Hyderabad) and AgVa Healthcare are developing low-cost, easy-to-use, and portable ventilators
- GoK-Kerala Direct using a platform developed by QKopy. It sends COVID-19 updates and travel information via phone notifications,
- Aqoza technologies and PerSapien claim they have developed chemical formulations that disinfect public spaces
- Droom, claims it has come up with a special anti-microbial coating called Corono Shield, which inhibits the growth of microorganism
- Marut Dronetech have partnered with state governments to test the use of drones to monitor adherence to social distancing rules
Sreevas Sahasranamam, Chancellor’s Fellow (Lecturer) in Entrepreneurship, Innovation, and Leadership, University of Strathclyde, has captured the four months of India’s experience very well in an article publishing in the World Economic Forum https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2020/05/coronavirus-covid19-innovation-technology-india/.