Companies Tap Into and Encourage Innovators by Offering Free Work Space

In an ever-changing world of technology, ideas are a hot commodity. Especially if those ideas come from people who know how to put them into action. To capture some of this entrepreneurial energy, one major corporation is providing free work space to innovators.

Electronics giant Samsung announced that it will be opening offices in New York and Silicon Valley to allow techie minds to put their ideas into action. The space, which Samsung calls the Samsung Accelerator, will encourage start-ups to develop software for Samsung devices. In doing this, Samsung believes innovators will be allowed to focus on creating great technology without worrying about coming up with funds or negotiating leases with building owners.

“Do you want access to the largest device footprint in the world, and the people, power and resources that make it all happen?” the company asks on Samsungaccelerator.com. “You bring the product vision; we’ll bring the rest (including the fresh-squeezed, organic juices).”

As technology has redefined the “workplace,” start-ups and freelancers are looking for spaces to work. Samsung’s “co-working space” option is just one of many options available to enterprising minds across the country. The following co-working spaces are more than just a place to set up your laptop eight hours a day. They encourage collaboration, bringing communities of tech workers together for learning and networking.

  • Wix Lounge. This free workspace is located in the heart of New York City in the Union Square area. The Wix Lounge encourages networking and collaboration through special events, held Mondays through Thursdays at set times. The special sessions are held at night to avoid interfering with the workday.
  • General Assembly. With eight locations worldwide, General Assembly provides a variety of classes to help start-ups learn and network. Classes feature a “learn by doing” model that connects instructors, entrepreneurs, and innovative thinkers to come up with great ideas. The workshop is based on the concept that by working together, communities of technophiles can often accomplish more than they could alone.
  • Alley NYC. This membership-only coworking space is filled with established start-ups. “Our focus in starting the alley was to create an environment where people actually wanted to come to work in the morning,” Alley NYC founder Jason Saltzman says in a video on the company’s site. “And we did it. And we did it in the heart of New York City.” Because the community is made up of a variety of technology start-ups, most businesses are able to find the resources they need to grow their business inside the workspace, which is open to members 24 hours a day.
  • Google Campus. If you live in London or Tel Aviv, Google has workspaces available for entrepreneurs. While the space isn’t free, it does provide rental options if you regularly travel to the area. For your rental price, you’ll have free wi-fi, comfortable workspaces, teleconferencing facilities, and access to printers. While this doesn’t appear to be an option in America yet, if workspaces continue to be popular for small technology businesses, it likely will be an option Google will explore.

Co-working spaces aren’t only about providing a better work option than the local Starbucks or a home office. Through collaborating and networking, app developers, hardware creators, graphic designers, and writers can collaborate on projects in an environment that is both comfortable and professional.

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About Stephanie Faris

Stephanie is a freelance writer and young adult/middle grade novelist, who worked in information systems for more than a decade. Her first book, 30 Days of No Gossip, will be released by Simon and Schuster in spring 2014. She lives in Nashville with her husband.