European Startup WIT Creates Solution For Data Transfer – No Internet Connection Needed

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WIT's founders created the technology behind their solution in just 15 hours. It has the potential to be a game changer for data transfer nowadays. So let's have a closer look:

WIT or Without Internet Technology is the work of two developer / business men, Alessio Delmonti and Davide Berardi. They are working on a technology that will allow data to be transferred without an internet connection. They have high hopes as this technology would effectively work as a fallback solution when internet connectivity is unavailable in the developed and as a tool for basic services, like banking, in the developing world. Currently they are participants of the Lisbon Challenge, a Lisbon based startup accelerator from Beta-i.

We spoke with the founders to find out more about their mission and technology:

What’s the story behind WIT and how did you get to this point?

We met working for two different companies within the Rockstart accelerator in Amsterdam. We recognized each other as people who were actually doing things. When we met we knew we were going to do something together. So we worked on some small projects just for fun and decided we should start participating in hackathons.

The very morning of one hackathon we had the idea of using SMS as a connectivity platform – we tried it and won! The engineers from Uber told us “this is fucking awesome – we are using a bunch of complicated stuff to do that but this actually works!”.

Wait, so how long was the hackathon? In what time did you develop this technology?

36 hours. The technology took around 15 hours to make. The next day we had a landing and after a week we had a company.

So that was in May, it’s October now: how far along are you?

Right now we are trying to achieve technical validation which basically means that other people have to say it works. We have given our SDK (software development kit) to some customers and we are basically trying to improve the technology and make sure it works very well for a wider audience.

We are going to start in Africa for a number of reasons: first of all, if we can make it work there, we can make it work anywhere. Second of all, the African market is extremely responsive to this kind of solution.

We are in the midst of building relationships, especially in Nigeria, with a couple of players in the tech and the startup scene because these are the guys who most understand this kind of pain to most. Right now we are distributing the technology for free, they are going to test it on all the different types of infrastructure and give us benchmarks. Once we have that and all the data, we are basically ready to go.

On your website you talk about using architecture that’s available today instead of building a new one. Do you think you are pushing technology forward or holding it back by using an old solution?

One of the seven principles of Unicef for building growth in a country is: “reuse and improve”. It’s about really pushing and using the technology of today before building a new one. Nobody is thinking about how to use the infrastructure that we have today. We are trying to hack the infrastructure or at least bi-pass it in a smart way.

What will be the point when you have “made it”?

We talk a lot about this; if our technology is really able to remove that barrier and empower economic growth, and actually make things better for people living in those countries, then we will have done a good job otherwise it will just be more “cool tech”.



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