Junglee man starts new firm

By siliconindia staff writer   |   Thursday, 20 April 2006, 07:00 Hrs
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BANGALORE: Rakesh Mathur, the founder of technology companies such as the storied Junglee and the failed Purple Yogi, has unveiled a startup that packs a vast chunk of the Internet into a PC.

While Google, Yahoo and Microsoft are busy building legions of data centers to capture the contents of the Web, Webaroo has decided that it will squeeze the essential Internet onto a single laptop.

Webaroo said that Acer, a leading Taiwan based maker of personal computers will begin selling laptops furnished with 40 gigabytes of data, representing a snapshot of the Web.

Besides the data contained in the PC's hard drive, the system will update itself when the laptop is connected to the Internet, allowing offline use of a lot of the Internet. The service will also offer slices of Web information on special subjects, like news, sports or about such major cities as New York, London and Mumbai, a prepared company release said.

Webaroo reportedly refers to these as Web packs and plans to offer them as free downloadable content. It expects to strike further deals like the Acer agreement with computer and mobile-device manufacturers. Also, its revenue will depend on advertising it hopes to sell on its content.

Webaroo has offices in Seattle and Santa Clara, CA, as well as in New Delhi and Mumbai.

Mathur's previous startup, Purple Yogi (now called Stratify), was founded in the heyday of the dotcoms.

It failed to live up to its billing. However, Junglee was a roaring success and was sold to Amazon.com.

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