Startup Spotlight #48 Tunefork

August 28, 2020

Digital Health brings its solutions for a wide range of health issues. One example of a digital health solution is in audiology. People with hearing disabilities now have a chance to benefit from the opportunities that digital health offers. Our spotlight guest this week is Tunefork, which provides its audio personalization technology for people (who have hearing problems) to have optimum hearing experience. Tunefork co-founder Bar Federbusch told us about their journey.

What is the name of your startup?

Tunefork

What is the website address of Tunefork?

https://www.tunefork.co.il/

Where is your startup based?

Israel

What are your targeted verticals for your startup?

HealthTech

Tell us what your startup does.

Tunefork is audio personalization technology software delivering an optimal hearing experience for people with hearing loss and seniors.

Tell us about your team.

Tunefork's team consists of 11 employees, most of them are engineers and developers.Yoav and Tomer, the Co-Founders are both alumni of 8200 – the elite technology unit of the Israeli defense forces. They have been working together on this project since 2016. Yoav and Tomer have a personal connection to the hearing loss filed through relatives who suffer from this kind of problem. Tomer is an experienced product manager who worked for several years as a data analyst. Yoav is a Ph.D. candidate in electrical engineering at Tel Aviv University with years of experience working in startup companies.The rest of the team is a combination of experienced professionals from the Israeli hi-tech industry alongside young and brilliant people from the elite universities and technology units in Israel.

When and why did you found your startup?

Yoav and Tomer both served in the same army unit although at different times and actually first met in 2016 at an event for startups working to help the hearing impaired. This is where Tomer first presented my concept. Yoav's wife is hearing impaired and he told me he really liked my idea and wanted to work with me. I started the company because I wanted to use my management and technical skills to help people seeking solutions for their disabilities; Yoav joined me because he believes in our goals and our determination to make it happen. 16\11\16

What are your key and unique features?

Tunefork has a unique medical approach to the Audio Personalization field. We are conducting clinical trials with hospitals and hearing clinics, and currently are the most accurate self-hearing test in the software market.Tunefork is also unique in its data-driven development. We have developed an advanced database that not only holds all the data related to individual Audio Profiles, but it can match these profiles to data held on the specifications of specific sound equipment, headphones, earbuds, and smart devices.An Audio Profile can therefore be matched precisely to any known or registered piece of audio equipment. This underlines the benefits of audio personalization; clinical accuracy; simplicity, an embedded software solution; availability, and ease-of-use. There are other solutions in the market such as hearing aids and amplified smartphones, but they are expensive and don't solve the problems we are aiming to solve.

What is your growth like?

We have 3 paying customers in the USA, and 10k users.

Tell us about the numbers that matter to you.

Hearing loss is an impairment that affects more than 460 million people worldwide (a large percentage of them over the age of 65), and who consequently experience hearing difficulties using their smartphones.Global smartphone sales are predicted to reach close to 2 billion units by 2021. Furthermore, sales of other digital devices – pads/tablets, Smart Home Appliances, IoT devices, in-car infotainment (GPS and more), entertainment options (video, music, TV, gaming) are expected to be in the billions over the next five years. For example, Deloitte Global predicts that the industry for smart speakers alone – internet-connected speakers with integrated digital voice assistants – will be worth US$7 billion in this year, selling 164 million units– a 63 percent growth rate over 2018.With currently 460 million hearing disabled individuals, and anticipated growth in this sector, we predict capturing at least 10% of this market within the first 5 years. The WHO estimates that the number of people with disabling hearing loss will grow over the years: up to 630 million by 2030 and plus 900 million by 2050.

What are your plans for next year and next 5 years?

Have more customers and help more people with our technology

Did you receive any investments?

Yes, 2 million dollars we have raised in April, 2020.

Tell us 3 startups that excite you, and why?

Uber - disrupting a huge market, based on user convenience.Aidoc - promising Israeli startup, bringing advanced technology to the medical field.Voiceitt - Israeli startup that shows social impact alongside the advanced technology and business strategy.

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