With so many new American tech ventures joining the competitive arena of startups on a yearly basis, exciting and original innovations can be hard to discern amongst the crowd. That said, some locales like Minnesota are especially adept at spawning promising tech firms.
In fact, last year the University of Minnesota’s Venture Center launched a record 16 startups in FY2016, several of which are highlighted below. Here are 15 tech startups from Minnesota you need to know about in 2017 and beyond.
A spinoff of the University of Minnesota UAS Research Labs, Bolder Flight Systems develops software/hardware for a variety of drone navigation products and systems. The company’s drone R&D platform targets makers, research institutions, and businesses.
75f has developed a building automation system that optimizes energy efficiency, saving users up to 70% in total energy costs. The solution adapts HVAC and lighting systems to the way a particular building behaves in the location’s climate, and purportedly saves users the amount it costs to install the system in 3 years.
Unveil.Social is a social network that allows users to genuinely connect by enabling them to safely unveil social truths. The offering is currently in beta release.
Based in Maple Grove, Minnesota, Wellbeats provides streaming fitness classes to any device. The solution features mobile-optimized workouts that require only twenty minutes and no equipment.
Sentera’s drone solutions have been deployed in safety/search-and-rescue, inspection, and agriculture use cases—for example, in cell tower maintenance and inspection jobs. Its drones are equipped with sensors for analyzing aspects of a farmer’s fields, sending the data straight to the user’s phone or computer.
Comic book lovers, eat your heart out: PlayspaceVR makes it possible to create, experience, and even share virtual reality (VR) comic books. The company is currently in stealth mode.
Minnepura develops environmentally-friendly, cost-effective solutions for purifying water and eliminating waste/chemicals. The company provides customized biospheres directly to the customer’s location for on-site purification.
Becoming a licensed attorney is a costly endeavor—to mitigate some of these costs, Esqyr’s solution provides online study tools for the bar exam using materials sourced directly from the National Conference of Bar Examiners.
Mystride is a mobile solution targeting the equestrian community—users can keep track of their rides, take selfies on the trail, even create profiles for their horses.
Rowbot helps farmers improve their yields by ensuring that nutrients are evenly distributed throughout a crop’s soil. The solution moves along at the crops’ ground level, measures soil quality, and distributes nutrients to the plants accordingly.
Corvae’s receptive heart monitoring solution detects potential warning signs for arrhythmia and other heart risks in realtime. The solution monitors and transmits patient data wirelessly, allowing doctors, nurses, and loved ones to access life-saving data.
FLUID’s learning water meter helps users detect leaks, conserve water, save money, and better understand their water usage patterns. The solution is easy-to-install and requires no plumbing expertise/assistance.
MakerBloks develops educational toys that combine hands-on play with a digital story. Its modular, color-coded, magnetically-connected electronic blocks allow children to build games, play music, solve puzzles, and more.
Inspectorio’s platform and mobile solution help businesses streamline their inspection/monitoring and factory compliance processes. Data analytics are accessed via an intuitive dashboard for continuous improvement and transparency.
Beepers may have gone the way of the dinosaur, but Revolar’s solution bring back the elegant simplicity of a pager in a small wearable: the device sends an alert or check-in with a click of a button. Customized updates to selected contacts are configured with one, two, or three clicks.
Promising tech startups can be found across the globe, but Minnesota has produced some incredible new companies over the last few years—be sure to keep these 15 innovators on your radar in 2017 and beyond.