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The startup ideas of the week

Air Tag: the next opportunity.

Apple is popular for its disruptive and high-quality products. Apple’s most recent offering, the AirTags might be the next Billion Dollar industry to tap into. AirTag is a tracking device developed by Apple. AirTag is designed to act as a key finder, helping people find personal objects. Users can attach the $29 coin-sized device to valuables such as keys or a backpack, then, if the item gets lost, locate it on a live map inside Apple's built-in Find My software.

When Apple introduced Airpods in the market, the product was ridiculed and shunned by various critics. Today, the Airpods boast a revenue of $12 Billion. This product is used by teens and young audience which creates more value for the brand. With the introduction of AirTags, this might be the next big thing. AirTags use ultra-wideband technology and take advantage of Apple's existing network of devices, which work as crowdsourced beacons to ping each other in order to determine your missing item's location. This feature enables these to be tracked anywhere in the world because it does not depend solely on your Wifi-connectivity. This enables the devices to be smaller, long-lasting and to have wider range.

When these devices were put up on the Amazon Marketplace, they were sold out within a few weeks and more than 60% of Apple customers say they plan to buy AirTags. According to some media sources, they rake in $383 per month on Amazon and Forbes claim that this could be the next billion Dollar business. This market is very similar to the mobile accessories market and there is no end to the number of participants that can enter this market. Some of the ideas worth exploring would be to target the niches:

  • Specialized accessories to target pets, bikes, wallets, clothes and other things that people might want to track on the go.

  • Specialized pouches to target niches such as Stretch Fabric Mount for AirTags.

  • Just like the mobile case market, giving an option to the users to custom design these tracking devices. According to the, the people will track keys, pets, luggage, bike, purses/wallet, Airpods case, kids, cars, drones, partner, TV remotes, laptop bags etc. with AirTags.

But this accessory will raise various privacy concerns such as unwanted stalking of people. Initially, this period was 3 days but according to a media source, Apple is shortening the period of when an AirTag can be separated from its owner without making noise. There could be an app that could help proactively scan for AirTags or AirTag like devices. Apple also plans to open its 'Find my Network' to third-party developers so that these developers could create hardware accessories that connect electronically to iPhone, iPad, iPod, and Apple Watch. This program for Apple gives these developers access to the technical specifications and resources needed to create accessories that communicate with Apple devices using MFi technologies and components. Creating similar apps for Android devices that can turn into similar Apple-like networks or creating other hardware and IoT devices using the Mfi network, possibilities are endless!

Silk Silk Silk

Silk pillow covers are trending on Google and Amazon. Silk is getting more into trend because of its hypoallergenic and antimicrobial properties and can thus have potential beneficial skin benefits. Because of its anti-moisture property, it does not draw moisture from the skin and hence keep your skin healthy. This also helps retain the skincare products during your sleep. According to the Google analytics, search for silk based products is on rise:

And this trend is expected to increase really large scale in the coming years. Similar searches such as Silk eye masks, anti-aging pillows are also on the rise as per google analytics. From car covers to baby strollers to baby pillows to hair accessories (such as hair scarves, scrunchies), the possibilities of silk products are infinitesimal.

The next wave of Super water

As per Food navigator, USA, Cactus water brand Pricklee is carving out a spot in the plant water category largely dominated by coconut water with a product it says delivers a more approachable taste profile, with half the sugar and calories than leading coconut water brands. Cactus water has all the beauty and health benefits we want in a trendy non-water water (It reduces under-eye puffiness! And helps curb muscle damage after a gym session!) but it also has half the sugar and calories of most coconut water brands. Cactus water is arguably better better 'coconut water' with lesser sugar and arguably more health benefits. The market has not even started yet! According to the media sources, the global pure coconut water market size was valued at $2.04 billion in 2019, and is anticipated to reach $6.81 billion by 2027, with a CAGR of 18.9% during the forecast period.

Various super water trends are on rise that include cactus, sugarcane, maple, sap/irch, watermelon and the race has just started with people becoming more concerned and aware as to what they drink. You could explore other options for your target audience.

The E-sports coaching might be the next big deal

Metafy has raised almost $ 9 million in 2 rounds of funding since january. This platform offers 1-on-1 coaching to casual and professional gamers at affordable rates. The industry boomed during the pandemic. More and more are turning to E-sports and making it their full-time careers and hence they shall not be regarded as mere 'computer games'. Some facts:

  1. Popular freelancing website, Fiverr saw a jump of 43% in booking for esports coaching sessions.

  2. Gamer Coach sold over 1,000 hours of virtual coaching in March, and 650 hours during February in the year 2020.

  3. The market is worth more than $ 1 billion as per Bloomsberg.

In India, this industry is the stages of infancy with a lot of room to grow. As the price pool goes into millions, the industry would most likely attract more talent and will grow exponentially in foreseeable future. This would lead to e-sports industry's demand mirroring the traditional professional sports. Fun fact: In 2019, esports drew in 443 million global viewers; American football and rugby combined attracted 410 million viewers, Green Man Gaming reported. The esports audience is projected to surpass the audience for baseball by 2022. It is also worth checking out the business proposition on Healthy gamer coaching.

Amazon business acquisition

Following Thrasio success, Nearly a dozen startups in India have the same thesis right now -- building a house of online brands, led by the success of US-based breakout unicorn Thrasio. Three-year-old thrasio had $500 million revenue and $100 million in profit last year. Now Indian investors are investing nearly $300 million in the first funding rounds of Thrasio's India equivalents -- many of whom are avoiding the spotlight, not even disclosing their company names to anyone except employees and investors. This has been discussed in detail by Moneycontrol.

The model is simple, acquire the business on Amazon, scale it up, and get better revenue and profits. Therasio, on an average, is acquiring a new business every 2.5 days according to Trends. Building a marketplace that facilitates these acquisitions is also a great opportunity. Micoracquire is one example, and an entrepreneur could just create a similar website that focuses on Amazon businesses.

By Siddharth Dalmia, the Startup Sherpa


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