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Brier Dudley's blog

Brier Dudley offers a critical look at technology and business issues affecting the Northwest.

October 31, 2007 at 2:59 PM

Startup catch-up: Widgets, wireless and more

Here’s a batch of company announcements I’ve been meaning to get to. In random order:

Avnera, a Beaverton, Ore.-based semiconductor company, emerged with new wireless technology competing with Bluetooth in the consumer electronics market. Its new products are a chip that enables transmits uncompressed CD-quality sound for applications such as wireless headphones and speakers — some of which are already on sale at Best Buy — and a wideband voice chip for gadgets such as VoIP handsets. It has a Seattle presence in its VP of product development, Mats Myrberg, who left Microsoft for Avnera but still lives in town.

Lots of activity in online real estate, including ChoiceA, a Vancouver, Wash., startup that has plans for a national database of for-sale-by-owner home listings to compete with the Multiple Listing Service. So far most of the listings are in Portland and Seattle, but founder Jeffrey Summerson said the venture’s starting to get national exposure.

Just in time for the holidays, Seattle cooking community site BigOven added a free video sharing and tagging feature so budding Rachael Rays can flaunt their stuff or broadcast grandma’s gravy-making technique. Founder Steve Murch, a former Microsoft and Expedia exec, reports traffic is up 400 percent year over year.

In the social network widget world, iLike’s reportedly part of the new Google-backed social network API project. Will the APIs help iLike replicate its Facebook success on other networks, or was just good timing?

Meanwhile, Mpire is reporting more big numbers for its WidgetBucks ad service — in its first 30 days, 25,000 publishers and bloggers signed up and 200 million ad impressions were registered. That’s double Mpire’s six-month growth projection. I wonder how independent ad services like Mpire’s will work on a Google-let platform. (Update: Mpire’s spokesman informed me today that he erred and didn’t give me the full count yesterday. Including signups via some ad network partnerships, WidgetBucks actually has 30,000 publishers and bloggers signed up. The company posted an update at its blog today.)

Veteran tech recruiter Colleen Aylward launched InterviewStudio in Bellevue. It’s a Web site/service where executive-level job candidates can compile video interviews, resumes, assessments and other materials for hiring managers who may use the site to evaluate pontential hires.

Another local video startup hopes to become the destination for amateur sports video created by players and fans. Seattle-based YourSports.com includes a site where users can create channels for their favorite team and of course a player widget and Facebook application. Founder Chris McCoy, 24, previously started baseball instructional company PitchSmarter.com.

Comments | More in | Topics: Startups

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