4 Innovative Startups Setting SXSW 2019 On Fire

Every year, South by Southwest (SXSW) Conference & Festivals event fills the city of Austin with a wide range of hi-tech devices, fascinating panels, experiences and trade shows. And the best part of it — product demonstrations by the most ambitious talents in the world with the new ideas to change it.


What originally started as a music festival in the 1980s, has evolved into into a dynamic, diverse, and potent melting pot of innovative solutions. Attended by over 170,000 people, SXSW is considered to be an epicenter for all things tech, from weird gizmos to entice the crowds to hardware products aimed at making life better. That’s the beauty of the SXSW exhibitions — some of the products are far-fetched concepts, some are practical solutions to daily problems, others are simply a lot of fun. Here is the best startups on display at SXSW 2019 poised to disrupt the tech world as you know it by bringing new innovations.


Clean Robotics

TrashBot booth at the Thrival Innovation Festival. Photo: CleanRobotics Facebook

We are at the point of adopting green energy solutions at a scale never seen before as plethora of tech startups is trying to build a future through innovation for electric vehicles, solar power, or waste management. Pittsburgh-based startup Clean Robotics utilizes robotics and AI to separate recyclables and landfill waste, and avoid potential contamination that can occur with traditional trash cans. Its major solution, smart bin called TrashBot, is capable to analyze the type of disposed waste and determine whether the item is destined for the landfill or recycling facility. The company has been selected as 2019 Alternates — don’t miss their dazzling pitch at the eleventh annual SXSW Pitch contest.

Read more: Sort It Out: TrashBot by Clean Robotics uses AI to help improve waste management




If you don’t like one of those constantly beeping gadgets strapped to your wrist, then VELDT hybrid smartwatch is what you want. Tokyo-based startup successfully managed to integrate the latest technology into the watches while preserving its beautiful texture and look. At SXSW 2019, VELDT — in a partnership with famous watch brand Citizen, will exhibit its new smartwatch VELDT LUXTURE, which allow users to combine the services and IoT devices at their own will. A timepiece is as tech-savvy as it is good-looking: its display shows the direction to nearby cafés, discrete colors can change according to the weather, lights are to be brighter on a cloudy day and music can be automatically changed after completing 10km-run.

Do not miss: VELDT launches ultimate luxury watch that keeps you connected — but focused



Teplo was created by three esteemed MBAs from different backgrounds to bring both India and Japanese tea culture to modern lifestyle. Credit:

Eyeing consumer passion for beverages, Teplo team puts a new spin on traditional methods of brewing a cup of tea and gives an opportunity to enjoy tea at your own pace. The product is tech-savvy yet practical for everyday life: a smart tea bottle equipped with a thermos-sensor, heater and Bluetooth module allows to track and control brewing temperature and time via a smartphone app. Good news for busy urban trotters: a lithium-ion rechargeable battery prevents your drink from getting cold and maintains the perfect temperature for up to four hours.

If you are interested in food tech: Kakaxi: Bringing the Story of Food Growing From the Farm To Your Table



Users can easily create their own maps by uploading any map image. Credit:

Kyoto-based startup Stroly is quietly disrupting the map making industry and changing its traditional approach based on manual human verification. For the past three years, the company has been developing a platform that brings illustrated maps online. Anyone can upload and add its own maps, selecting landmarks and adding the context of these places with images or text. Positions of landmarks are correlated so that users can easily find maps created by others near their current location. Chosen as one of the finalists under the Entertainment and Content category for SXSW Pitch event, Stroly will compete for a great chance to attract the attention of investors and users to help accelerate their business.

Read more: 7 reasons why you should prototype in Kyoto, Japan