Quick Pitch: Use uME digital business cards to exchange contact information, add contacts to your social networks and remember them later.
Genius Idea: Create and exchange digital business cards for your multiple personalities.
The business card has been repeatedly reinvented in digital and mobile form, but the fact that many of us — even digital influencers — still whip out and exchange paper cards implies that there’s still room for innovation.
uME, an iPhone app launched two weeks ago from startup ID2, attempts to innovate by making its product accessible to a more mainstream, low-tech audience.
“uME is about simplifying card exchange and rapidly getting connected,” ID2 CEO Jeff Axup says of his self-funded startup, which is run by a five-person team based in San Diego.
“We are about replacing paper cards and making connection info digital and automatically updated. Our service works 100% of the time and doesn’t require both parties to install the app or be a techie,” he adds.
uME [iTunes link] in its current state offers iPhone users a fast and easy way to create custom digital business cards for multiple identities or occasions. (An Android application is still a few months away.)
It’s not wholly original in purpose, but Axup sees the application as best-suited for technophobes looking to abandon paper cards.
As a uME user, you can send along the digital business card replica of your choice to new contacts — with an accompanying note and attached geo-location tag — via Twitter or email, view your sent and received card history, electronically scan the cards of other uME users, add uME card codes to your printed business cards and eventually design your cards to your liking (as is, you can choose from a few stock designs).
The application has merit and a few features even us technophiles and social media mavens can appreciate. Still, we think uME needs a bit more oomph if it’s going to successfully go up against successful veteran startups already working to solve physical-to-digital contact exchange.
Series Supported by Microsoft BizSpark
The Spark of Genius Series highlights a unique feature of startups and is made possible by Microsoft BizSpark, a startup program that gives you three-year access to the latest Microsoft development tools, as well as connecting you to a nationwide network of investors and incubators. There are no upfront costs, so if your business is privately owned, less than three years old, and generates less than U.S.$1 million in annual revenue, you can sign up today.