Israel’s tech hub is booming after $1bn sale of Waze. Here are five of Tel Aviv’s finest

Face.com
The premise of Face.com is simple. The software, created by the three-year-old Tel-Aviv-based company, specialises in facial recognition, allows users to identify people in their photos from a selection of their friends from social media networks. Facebook has just snapped the company up with a deal estimated to be worth between £35-38m, which will allow Facebook users to easily tag friends into uploaded images. The deal has already reignited criticisms over privacy concerns. Critics are calling for strict safeguards on how the information will be store but Facebook has refuted claims that it will build a facial recognition database.

Soluto
Soluto is one of the many vibrant Israeli tech start-ups grabbing people’s attention. The cloud-based PC management service is proving popular with small businesses and IT providers, as it is designed to help make computers run better. The software allows users to manage PCs and devices easily through web-based remote access and offers real time alerts when things go wrong. This week the company announced the launch of a new tool that will allow users to manage others’ smartphones, allowing employers to do things like allow or disallow roaming and lock or wipe a device if it’s lost of stolen.

Waze
The popular free smartphone application combines GPS navigation software with social networking features, allowing users to submit travel times and route details to improve the service’s directions and traffic reports. It means users are able to see changes in road conditions and notifications about accidents in real time. Google recently bought the company for £825m, making it one of the largest acquisitions of an Israeli start-up. Facebook and Apple were also said to be interested in the company. The move cements Israel’s tech prowess and signals the country’s start-ups’ growing mass appeal.

Gifts Project
This start-up is an innovative way for to facilitate group “gifting”. It allows groups of friends to club together over social networks and chip in to a present for a friend. Each person in the group can pay the desired amount via their debit card or PayPal account. The company is integrated with Facebook, allowing participants to set up private groups – and remind people to pay up. The company also provides a “white label” service, allowing companies to allow group gifting through their websites under theit own branding. The site has now been snapped up by online auction giant eBay.

Any.do
This app is the leader in the lucrative “to-do list” space. It differs from its rivals by integrating Kiip’s rewards platform, allowing users to receive real-life perks like discount coupons when they complete their to-do lists. It’s an interesting proposition: users feel engaged with the app, while Kiip – and presumably Any.do – will take a slice of any business directed the way of advertisers. Users can also storu up “credits” for completing their lists to get etter offers. The site has already raised over $15m in funding.