Israel’s startup community has inaugurated its first gadget library. The Jerusalem venue, called The Device Lab, has cutting-edge technologies and devices on loan for entrepreneurs and students to try out their ideas.
US colleges have long offered their academic communities the opportunity to come try out new and old technologies on an array of gadgets and computers at so-called gadget libraries.
Now, Israeli developers – new and veteran – have a library of their own in which to tinker about.
Intel Israel, the government, the Jerusalem municipality and a group of young Jerusalemites known as Tze’irim Bamerkaz are backing the new project at 22 Shivtey Israel Street.
On loan are smartwatches and laptops, 3D cameras, smart computer chips, gaming computers, tablets, and Android and iOS smartphones by top brands such as Lenovo, Intel, Asus, Apple, Tag Heuer, RealSense and Edison. The library’s collection will constantly evolve.
“The new gadget library provides an international starting point for the young and innovative entrepreneurs in Jerusalem. Whoever succeeds in Jerusalem will succeed in the world,” Mayor Nir Barkat said in a statement.
Jerusalem’s startup ecosystem is growing all the time. In 2012, there were no accelerators in the city, according to Made in Jerusalem organization for the city’s entrepreneurs. To date, there are 15 startup hubs and accelerators in Jerusalem, according to Made in Jerusalem.
With the new gadget library now open, students and early-stage entrepreneurs no longer need to break the bank to try their ideas on new devices.
An annual subscription costs $212 and devices are loaned out for different amounts of time depending on demand.
Organizers say the library lab will also be a venue for demos, workshops and lectures.
“We are very pleased that we have the chance to promote technology and entrepreneurship in Jerusalem,” said Shahaf Kiselstein, Intel’s Vice President for Platform Engineering. “A vibrant entrepreneurial community is an important asset for Jerusalem.”