The news just keeps rolling out of TechCrunch Disrupt. (Guys, please save us a few stories for next week.) Sonar.me debuted last year on the battlefield and came close to taking home the grand prize. Today, they’re debuting several new features with the goal of becoming your “here-now social network.” Here’s what’s new: First off, they’re adding tweet-like status messages, which’ll show up for friends and other relevant people nearby. They’re also adding notifications, so connections’ll get a ping when you show up nearby. (They’ll see your status message.) You can also now privately message someone who shows up in your vicinity.
BillGuard is only half-New Yorker–CEOYaron Samidis based in “New York and Tel Aviv.” But the company, which combs your online statements for fraud and frivolous charges, garnered 10,000 sign-ups in a matter of days after launching in May at TechCrunch Disrupt. They discovered fraud on 20 percent of the new users’ bills, and a $6,000 erroneous charge on one wealthy individual’s card.
New York founder Brett Martin is presenting at TechCrunch Disrupt his mobile app Sonar.me, which displays people in the room you would want to meet or have friends in common with based on your online social graph. He built it because he used to sit in bars, wanting to meet new friends and Ruby developers, but instead checked messages on his phone from people miles away. “How do I tell people that I want to party tonight?” he asked. “Which I do!” (We hear the unofficial afterparty is with Qwiki and Stylecaster at Casa La Femme in the West Village.)
“Thousands,” Sonar.me co-founder Brett Martin said via Twitter. “Life is good.” Sonar–a mobile app that shows you how you’re connected to other people in the room–is one of the six finalists for TechCrunch’s Battlefield competition this afternoon, along with fellow New York/Israeli start-up BillGuard, which monitors credit and debit cards for hidden charges, billing errors, forgotten subscriptions and fraud.
There are two finalists from San Francisco (ccLoop and Getaround), one from New York (Sonar), one from New York/Israel (BillGuard), one from just Israel (Doat), and one from New Orleans (InvoiceASAP).
One of the great themes among New York’s location based start-ups is that the services, which rely on the mobile web, generate a lot of their real value offline, by encouraging people to try new things and change their routine behavior.
Sonar.me, which is one of six finalists for the $50,000 prize at this Read More