Photo: D10 conference
We just found out that True&Co cofounder Aarthi Ramamurthy is working on a cool new startup for photography buffs.If she’s successful, and there’s every reason to believe she will, it could lead to a whole new way to buy stuff over the Internet.
Ramamurthy came into the public’s eye about a year ago, when True&Co burst onto the scene. It’s an online lingerie store that uses algorithms to guarantee a bra will fit perfectly.
That’s a big improvement over the classic bra fitting, which involves a socially uncomfortable situation with a saleswoman and a tape measure.
But a few months ago Ramamurthy split from the company, leaving it in the hands of cofounder Michelle Lam.
“We finished a year and our visions were different for where we wanted to take the company,” Lam told Business Insider. So Ramamurthy stepped out, keeping her financial stake.
Ramamurthy wasn’t worried about her future when she left. She’s exactly the kind of engineering talent who prospers in the Valley. She spent six years at Microsoft, working on its popular Visual Studio software development tool and on Xbox Live. She was poached by Netflix, helping it develop its streaming 3D content service.
Even a little app that she and her husband, Sriram Krishnan, wrote on their honeymoon has been successful. He’s an ex-Microsoftie, too, and yes, they spent their honeymoon in Hawaii coding together. BubbleGum has become a top Windows Phone 7 app for taking and sharing photos.
BubbleGum has partially inspired the startup she’s working on now. It’s an e-commerce site to help teach amateur photographers how to take better pictures. (Ramamurthy is an amateur photographer herself.)
Her site will use a recommendation engine, similar to the ones she wrote for bras and movies, to help photographers determine what equipment they need and then help them try before they buy.
She’s so early that the startup doesn’t have a name yet. But there’s still reason to believe she’ll have another hit. She’s got the backing of Battery Ventures, where she’s an entrepreneur-in-residence, and one of her mentors is Cisco bigwig Padmasree Warrior, the company’s chief strategy officer.
We promised not to spill more beans than that, but if this recommend/try/buy thing works, it could be a model for others.