Top 10 life-hacking business ideas in 2006

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We’re deviating from our regular schedule to bring you the best new business ideas of 2006. Each day, we’ll feature our personal favorites. This batch highlights ten great new businesses focused on making their customers’ lives easier.

  1. Mom-to-be, no time free?: As long as our spotters send us spottings like Babyplanners, Springwise will never go out of business. This newborn London-based company has managed to find yet another niche-market waiting to be penetrated: young, hard-working parents-to-be, who are willing to shell out some dough to have others deal with the endless shopping, researching, conflicting advice and general stress and confusion that come with a first-time pregnancy. More »
  2. Summer storage for students: Dorm2Dorm was founded by college students, for college students. The service is simple: students order storage materials online, which are delivered a week before finals. Dorm2Dorm comes back a week later, when finals are out of the way, to pick up packed items and store them for the summer. More »

  3. Charge lockers: A ChargeBox is a set of lockers designed to charge batteries of phones and other mobile devices. Created by British Boxbrands, ChargeBoxes have six lockers with each locker containing four different chargers. The user picks the appropriate locker for their device, opens the door and attaches the device to a charger inside. More »

  4. Discount glasses online: Helping consumers see money left in their wallets, 23-year-old James Murray Wells has shaken the British prescription glasses industry. Managing director and co-owner of Glasses Direct, Murray Wells began his no-frills web store offering specs for as low as 10 percent of the price of many high street stores. More »
  5. Keeping track of kids & keys: The Loc8tor is a combination of radio-frequency emitting tags and a cellphone-sized signal decoder. Both tags and handheld transmit and receive radio signals. Each handheld device can monitor up to 24 tags, which can be attached to keys, kids, pets and anything else of value that has a tendency to get lost. More »
  6. Quick delivery e-commerce: In the San Francisco Bay area and Atlanta, two e-commerce companies are betting on the appeal of almost-instant delivery. More »
  7. Kids party in a box: Favouritz sells boxes filled with everything needed for an original and entertaining children’s party. Founded by Danish-Swiss Jeannette Domeisen, Favouritz targets the niche market of children’s’ birthday parties. More »
  8. Helping friends keep track: BillMonk is an online and mobile application that helps friends to keep track of how much money and which items they owe each other. More »
  9. Lost & found in the 21st century: Last year, we featured a few tech-savvy lost and found services that let consumers label their valuables and recover them if lost or stolen. A recent spotting came in from Singapore, where Bak2u offers various ways of securing expensive gadgets. More »

  10. Dating security: Secure Singles has developed a ‘personal emergency notification system’ for the dating world. A tool that singles can use to protect themselves, Secure Singles allows users to store information on the people they’re planning to meet. More »
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