TechInAfrica – MTN Business is hosting two events altogether in the ICT calendar. It’s giving the South African developers an opportunity to submit their original tech solution for MTN Business App Of The Year Awards and IoT Conference & Awards competition.
With the aim of driving disruption and creating changes, these competitions are celebrating the creative endeavors of the country’s developers, having been attended for years by more than 800 participants, including the captains of industries, key ICT stakeholders, MTN partners, and the developers, followed by leading business figure in the technology sector.
On 27th August, the event will focus IoT solution for the industrial manufacturing, retail, and insurance industries, with the session running on Cape Town. The development of Smart cities via IoT is another theme to discuss on 10th September, held in Pretoria, and the deadline for submission on both competitions is closing on 25th September. Each competition has a separate judging panel of leading tech experts, and the winners’ announcement is scheduled to take off on 24th October, which will take place on Sandton Convention Centre and rolled in the daytime for IoT, while continued on the evening by MTN.
On the second round MTN in Johannesburg, each finalist has to pitch their solution to the judges, given 10 minutes, followed by a Q&A session. The finalist who lived outside of Johannesburg is allowed to partake the session with Skype. Pwc, a global auditing firm, will be the auditor of the judging process.
The winners will be rewarded with a trip to Silicon Valley, USA, or Tech Crunch in Germany, or according to their choice, and the trip itself shall worth a value of R200,000.
There are several categories in each of the two competitions.
Entries in the IoT Conference & Awards will be considered in the following categories:
- The Best Commercial IoT Solution: Solution that is already available on the market and commercially viable.
- The Most Disruptive IoT Solution: Solution that brings rapid disruption or changes for its surroundings, or having a revolutionizing industry potential.
- Best Enterprise Development Solution: Solution that is developed by an enterprise development beneficiary or a developer that has gone through an incubation program.
- Innovative Hardware in IoT: An IoT hardware solution that originates from an established business or organization.
- Best Industry 4.0 solution: Industry 4.0 solution that improves data collection and analysis while transforming it to practical, real-time, and insightful information for enterprise and extended business systems, thus strengthening the collaboration, problem-solving speed, and innovation department.
MTN Business App of the Year Awards categories include:
- Best Consumer Solution: Solution that is customer-centric, focusing on lifting consumer’s burden, give a convenient impact to customers’lives.
- Best Enterprise Solution: Solution that is focused on businesses or companies, addressing business challenges such as storage, CRM, or The Internet of Things.
- Best Women in STEM: Solution that gives inspiration, showcasing the skill and achievement from women in one of these fields, STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics).
- Best Incubated Solution: Solution by individual or team that is currently developed by an incubator or accelerator hub.
Last year’s winning participants at the IoT Conference & Awards choose Silicon Valley as their destination, while the winning participants of the MTN Business App Of The Year pick Tech Crunch conference as their travel destination.
“Over the past few years, these two platforms have unearthed and profiled ground-breaking, home-grown apps and tech solutions that have become household names and topics of discussion at business events. We believe that by combining the brand appeal of these two development initiatives, we can make a meaningful contribution to the growth of the ICT sector. Additionally, we are reaffirming our commitment to champion the app development movement by promoting game-changing, local solutions that are scalable and commercially viable on the global stage,” According to Wanda Matandela, the Chief Enterprise Officer of MTN Business.
According to Statista, the app development industry is projected to exceed $189 billion by 2020. But the real figures still need some push. Taking the five leading countries in Africa into account, which is comprised of South Africa, Kenya, Nigeria, Ghana, and Tanzania, these countries are contributing to less than 5% of developers, generating less than 5% from the global app revenue. So, despite the exponential and steep growth of the app development industry, the countries’ share of figures is pretty much negligible, according to Caribou Digital’s report, Winners % Losers in the Global App economy.
As Matandela concluded, both MTN and IoT are seeking to address these challenges by fostering the creation of a vibrant and commercially viable app development industry. Socio-economic challenges facing the country and the continent will create an opportunity for local developers to innovate and develop home-grown solutions that can advance the rest of the world while increasing the share of revenue in the app development economy.