While biking regularly to work in the UK, I can't tell you the countless issues I had with my front derailleur. An interesting innovation in the biking World caught my eye a few days back called the Efneo. They call it a "planetary gearbox" where there is one chainring rotating at three different speeds on each gear instead of the traditional derailleur where three chainrings of different sizes rotate at the same speed. It is an equivalent to a 28/40/50T front crankset.
The new gearbox claims to get rid of some of my biking pet peeves. For example, you can reset the gear to 1st while on a standstill and start from first gear. This is often an issue with the traditional gears when you have to come to a sudden standstill while at higher gears - resetting to 1st gear is not possible unless you start riding again. They also claim that the gear shifting is much easier and quicker. It definitely does look smooth in their videos. They also claim to reduce maintenance as well.
There are some limitations: It will not work properly with a fixie bike that has no freewheel in a rear wheel and is not meant for off-roaders.
Check out their Indiegogo campaign which has raised 47% of their $30,000 goal sum.
Also visit the Efneo website for more information.