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Sharp Start-Up: The Only High-Tech Germ-Killer You May Ever Need

The Backstory

Ben and Autumn Colayco, creators of UviCube, became acquainted with the germicidal properties of UV light when, while living in Asia during the H1N1 pandemic in 2009, their first child, Callie, was born with an infection. At-home use of the technology was everywhere, but when the couple returned to the United States they had trouble finding similar devices on the market. Envisioning a product that would keep germs at bay, save time and look good, they came up with the UviCube: a machine capable of eliminating 99.9 percent of harmful bacteria from baby items, notoriously germ-ridden electronics like remote controls and phones and other products using ultraviolet germicidal irradiation (UVGI). The couple reached their $25,000 Kickstarter goal in just five days last month.

The Details

Depending on what you’re de-germing, the UviCube offers three settings: drying and disinfecting (normally used for bottles, nipples, pacifiers and other baby related items), sanitizing (good for dry pieces like remote controls, smartphones, tablets and other electronics) and vent (an optional five minutes of air circulation for additional drying time if needed). To help make the invention one that hit the sweet spot between good-looking design and cutting-edge tech—in other words, something you’ll want to keep on your counter and actually use—the couple collaborated with electronics, manufacturing and medical-device entrepreneurs. And considering its multitasking ways, allowing your smartphone to be a clean as a pacifier, UviCube signals a new way of taking care of the things in your personal space. “Perhaps it reflects a trend where we begin to move from an era of boiling bottles to a modern age that takes into consideration the technologies and gadgets that are becoming a bigger part of our parenting lives,” says Autumn.

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