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Twist-and-release vitamin water

Add / Remove Last year we wrote about VIZcap, a bottling innovation that lets consumers release vitamins and other supplements into bottled water just before they drink it, and now a new line of health drinks has launched based on much the same idea. Los Angeles-based Activate Drinks, which debuted earlier this spring, is a […]

Eco-mattress in a box

US-based Keetsa has developed a new range of mattresses using sustainable components including recycled steel and scrap memory foam.

Espresso made from red tea

Add / Remove Lattes and cappuccinos may have achieved near-cult status around much of the world, but health benefits are not typically among their virtues. A new contender fresh out of South Africa is now proposing a healthier alternative: espresso made from red tea. Back in 2005, South African Cape farmer and espresso junkie Carl […]

Zero cents per minute: 100,000 takers so far

Add / Remove We covered mobile virtual network operator Blyk both before and just after its launch last year. For those who have been wondering how the company is doing, last week it reported that it had reached 100,000 members in Britain in just six months. Blyk targets 16- to 24-year-olds with its free mobile […]

Kiva update: Matching program doubles loans

Add / Remove Longtime Springwise readers may remember Kiva, the venture we wrote about back in 2006 that facilitates charitable microloans to entrepreneurs in the developing world. Now the organization has found a way to make loans go even further through a partnership with credit card issuer Advanta. Earlier this month Advanta and Kiva announced […]

Tuned-in garage for hybrid vehicles

Add / Remove We’ve already written about premium and female-friendly auto shops and dealers, and now a San Francisco-based company has created an upscale, hybrid-focused garage with a thoroughly green approach. Founded last year, Luscious Garage is situated in a historic warehouse on San Francisco’s Clementina Street, complete with original brick frontage, a cozy mezzanine […]

Short-term mobile internet for travellers

Add / Remove Travellers who need internet access on the road typically have two choices: either limit their use to the confines of hotel or café wifi—which can be pricey—or subscribe to long-term and expensive broadband data card services. New York-based RovAir now offers a third option with its day-pass wireless mobile broadband service. Founded […]

Two-wheeled tow ‘truck’

Add / Remove The Retriever is a two-wheeled towing vehicle based on a Honda Goldwing motorcycle that can worm its way through city gridlock and congested highways like no four-wheeled towing vehicle could ever dream of. The Retriever is the ingenious invention of the aptly named Swedish firm Coming Through. According to the company, it […]

Route planner with a wiki twist

Add / Remove Earlier this year we wrote about Walkit, an advanced route planner for UK pedestrians, and now Simpatigo has launched a similar service in the US that adds a wealth of information about local attractions. Simpatigo creates personalized tour guides complete with directions and markers for attractions along the way. Users select beginning […]

Prefunded, crowdmanaged music festival

Add / Remove We’ve already written about a number of efforts to crowdfund and crowdmanage music bands, and now in Scotland a crowdmanaged music festival is in the works that was prefunded by a local brand. Last week Tennent’s Lager launched Tennent’s Mutual, a new music venture that will ultimately result in a live music […]

Brain gyms for baby boomers

Add / Remove Our brains resemble our muscles in one key respect: don’t exercise them, and they’re likely to lose strength. Conversely, many experts now believe that brains stimulated in a healthy manner can better resist debilitating mental conditions such as Alzheimer’s. Which begs the question: how to keep brains in top shape? The solution […]

Bottle deposit refunds: push here to donate

Add / Remove In Denmark, as in many other countries, consumers pay a refundable deposit on bottles. When they return them through a retailer’s collection machine, it prints out a slip of paper that states how much they’ll receive at the cash register. Generally, these aren’t large amounts, but they’re enough to get people to […]

Cargo bikes for greener business deliveries in congested cities

Add / Remove It’s a fact of life in the business world that companies in urban areas tend to require frequent, small deliveries of merchandise and other goods from the city outskirts and beyond. That’s a recipe for inefficiency, traffic congestion and pollution, as so many delivery trucks make their way in and out of […]

IKEA builds nap hotel in Stockholm shopping mall

Add / Remove Earlier this year, we wrote about a sympathetic initiative by Paris airports, giving weary travellers a chance to recharge with a dose of full-spectrum light therapy. Last week, IKEA offered fatigued Stockholm shoppers a similar form of respite by installing a Sovhotell (sleep hotel) in one of the city’s downtown shopping centres. […]

Alcohol breath testing for events

Add / Remove It’s estimated that one in every three traffic fatalities in Europe involve alcohol-impaired drivers. In the US, alcohol-related car crashes kill someone every 31 minutes, according to the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, and the problem extends around the world. Blow Me is a UK-based company that hopes to reduce such […]

Web tools for landlords

Add / Remove Managing a rental property is no task for the faint of heart, and that challenge only multiplies as the list of properties grows. Fortunately, two companies on two different continents have come up with tools to help make the job easier. Australian Streetfolio gives property managers a central way to manage their […]

Baby concierge service with an eco twist

Add / Remove Back in 2006 we wrote about Babyplanners, a UK firm that helps parents-to-be prepare for the arrival of their first baby. Now Oregon-based Itsabelly provides similar services but with an eco twist. Launched last year, Itsabelly offers personalized plans that can include whatever services an expecting couple needs, such as identifying the […]

Merlot & other premium grape juices

Add / Remove The line between kid and adult beverages began to blur a few years ago, when vintners began offering wines in Tetra Paks resembling juice boxes. Now, the confusion goes the other way with First Blush‘s Cabernet, Merlot and Chardonnay fruit juices. First Blush varietal grape juices are alcohol-free and entirely suitable for […]

Activism site ensures participation

Add / Remove Few things are more frustrating to those trying to effect social change than an effort that fails simply for lack of participation. The Point is a new activism site that avoids that problem by giving planners a way to organize fundraisers, rallies, boycotts and other events so that they occur only once […]

Self-serve frozen yoghurt

Add / Remove Korean-style frozen yoghurt stores like Pinkberry and Red Mango, which we featured in 2006, are popping up across the US, hooking consumers on a dessert that’s tangier and less sweet than fro-yo of yore. Entering a crowded market, a small Californian chain has come up with a simple sales model that sets […]

Wine by the trial-sized tube

Add / Remove Wine may be enjoying new popularity, but that doesn’t mean the average consumer isn’t still daunted by the knowledge it takes to pick a bottle they’ll like. We’ve written about several efforts to simplify the process, and now WineSide is taking a novel approach by offering wines packaged in sample-sized tubes. WineSide […]