On Tuesday evening I went along to the MTN Business App of the Year Awards at The Venue, Melrose Arch.
The MC was funny man Joey Rasdien who was hilarious even when he wasn’t trying to be 🙂 In its second year, the one thing the judges said repeatedly is how much the standard has upped since the inaugural event last year and honestly for me, that’s the win. This year’s winners looked quite different from the 2012 winners where FNB made a bit of a clean sweep (& probably deservedly so, it just got bit boring).
This year also saw some changes in the judges, they were:
- Melissa Attree – Directive Creator at communications agency Cerebra (I reckon we need a second lady on this panel!)
- Kojo Baffoe – editor of Destiny Man magazine
- Toby Shapshak – editor of Stuff magazine
- Jonathan Hoehler – manager of mobile technologies at Deloitte Digital
- Max Stone – a divisional director at Pinnacle Africa (distributors of over 90 brands like Beats by dr dre, Samsung & Microsoft)
The competition received over 250 submissions that were drilled down to 5 in every category. Of those 5, a top 3 per category was chosen and then a winner for each one. I really liked that this year the developers had to pitch their app to the judges in person too. Developers had to submit their app by the 10th of July and all apps had to be locally developed and could be entered into more than 1 category.
And so the winners were…
- Best IOS Consumer – DStv
- Best IOS Enterprise – .comm Telco Data Visualizer
- Best Blackberry app – PriceCheck Mobile
- Best Android app Enterprise – MarkitShare
- Best Android app Consumer – Nedbank App Suite (this for me, was the (pleasant!) surprise of the night)
- Best HTML 5 app – SnapScan
- Best Windows app – Kids Aid
- Most innovative app – bookly
- Best independent (garage) developer – Gautrain Buddy
I enjoyed the story that the winner of garage developer app told and that was that the official Gautrain app just didn’t give him what he was needing out of it, so he developed his own app. Incidentally he works for FNB.
And the overall winner of the night (i.e. best app of all of the above winners) went to SnapScan (a mobile payment solution) who walked away with a R200k media package and R20k’s worth of gadgets. I got really excited about this app, here’s how it works:
– the app is free (yay!) & available for on android, IOS and Blackberry
– you take a picture of your credit card using the app and it stores your card details (it does work but you do have to enter the expiry, CVV & your name etc. manually).
– you scan the item’s barcode and that’s pretty much it.
– the app emails the receipt to you electronically (loooove that!)
On the downside it’s only available in the Stellenbosch area in Cape Town currently but they are rolling out. I wasn’t able to get feedback from them on Twitter on what the ETA is for Jozi, but I’m definitely heading out to Stellies to try it next time I’m home.
Best you get working on your submission for 2014!