FutureFive NZ - Tech challenge could produce next big wearable tech


Tech challenge could produce next big wearable tech

Wearable technology is a rapidly growing industry, and serves to enhance consumer life with tech that gathers data and provides feedback to the user. Notable existing tech is the smartwatch industry, with big players such as Apple, Samsung and Fitbit all making their mark.

A chance is coming up for Kiwis to create the next fad in wearable technology, in New Zealand’s premier C-Prize challenge launched by Callaghan Innovation.

Launched by the Government’s business innovation agency, C-Prize offers prizes to those that can develop unique and applicable ideas in wearable technology.

The main incentive is a $100,000 prize, as well as the leading innovations having the opportunity to become legitimate businesses.

“We know it takes a lot of courage to make the leap into innovation, and an opportunity like C-Prize can be just the nudge that people with ideas and ambition need to create a tangible concept,” says Vic Crone, CEO of Callaghan Innovation.

The targeted areas for innovation in New Zealand are focussed around healthier living, safer working and playing smarter.

Participants are required to create software-hardware that provides a wearable solution in any or all of these areas, which gathers and processes user data before giving back in an understandable way that improves the aspect of the user’s life.

C-Prize judge and VX Sport CEO, Richard Snow says the sky’s the limit for entrants to the competition.

“It can not only enhance personal communications for people within their environment, but also to create sensors and analysis that will improve health, wellness and efficiency in our daily lives.”

The first ever C-Prize held in 2015 generated a lot of interest in drone technology, and helped to launch the Dotterel venture. Dotterel has won awards and been an attractive investment opportunity after its noise-reduction technology was featured as a C-Prize finalist two years ago.

Entry is open to anyone aged 16 and over, currently living in New Zealand.

The C-Prize grand prize winner will receive a large prize package worth $100,000. Included in the package is $50,000 cash, wide market exposure, support to progress commercialisation opportunities, a market insights trip to Las Vegas.

Other prizes are available for up to 10 finalist teams, each receiving a package worth $35,000 with funds towards developing their idea into a prototype.

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