All of the news and views from the Smart UK Project
In November 2011 the Smart UK Project was launched to find the most innovative mobile companies in the UK. After shortlisting 20 companies from the original 79 entrants it was left to the expert judging panel – made up of Mike Short (Vice President of Public Affairs, Telefonica Europe), Jon Bradford (startups mentor and Springboard founder ) Russell Buckley (ex-AdMob executive) and Geoff McCormick (director of leading design consultancy, TheAlloy) – to pick four finalist from the strong line-up. It was a tough task and after much deliberation the final four have just been announced – congratulations to blippar, DataWind, P2i and QRpedia.
The judges based their selection on the competition’s criteria with the finalist showing their innovations to be effective, easy to understand and with global potential and impact. Having already pitched their innovations to the UK media last month, this quartet will do it all again in front of the judging panel on 29th February at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. The UK’s most innovate company will be crowned on the same day.
Another look at the finalist and their mobile innovations:
This company’s augmented reality (AR)-based platform brings a deeper level of interaction and fun to mobile advertising. Thorough a smartphone’s camera, static advertising and physical branding can be transformed into a new digital experience, whether through gaming, coupons, video or animation. It is designed to add value to the customer experience and increase ‘stickiness’.
At first glance, DataWind’s 7-inch Android powered tablet does not appear massively innovative. But when you find out it retails for just $35, its global potential becomes apparent. The company is aiming to ‘break the price barrier for computing and internet access’ and make it affordable, especially in emerging markets around the world.
P2i Aridion technology was original developed for the military to protect soldiers from chemical attack but this nano-coating is now being applied to mobile phones. With high water repellency – liquid forms in beads and simply rolls off surface – Aridion guards a handset’s electronics from water damage and corrosion. This technology could also potentially be applied to phone screens.
Already being used in leading museums around the world, QRpedia revolutionises how you engage with exhibitions. Point a phone camera at a QR code and this technology automatically detects the users preferred language before directing them to a relevant mobile formatted Wikipedia page. Of course QRpedia is not exclusive to just museums with the potential for use at zoos, theme parks and aquariums.