Tech City competes in 2012 apps race

THE race is on to develop an app showcasing what Hackney, an Olympic host borough, has to offer visitors ahead of the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Hackney Council, Digital Shoreditch and IC tomorrow have launched the Race for Apps competition to crowdsource mobile apps for visitors, including business leaders and journalists, to use around Games time.

With millions of people descending on London next year, Race for Apps invites entries in the following five categories, with gold, silver and bronze medals awarded for winners in each, deadline 15 December: finding your way; making connections; citizen journalism; fun and games; and wild card.

During the race, competitors will retain intellectual property and commercial rights while working with a network of mentors and investors, including Seedcamp, the Government’s UK Trade and Investment agency (UKTI), and Vodafone developer (, with access to local data sets. Participants can also have their app seen on the Vodafone Shop.

Only the first eight viable submissions for each category will go through, and while some might be concepts others could be finished products requiring only slight adaptation.

The apps will then be raced against each another to be ready by April 2012, with members of IC tomorrow s online platform testing them out. Once finished, they will be judged by a panel of tech sector peers, and the winners announced at the Digital Shoreditch Festival, to be held between May 21 and 2 June, 2012.

Next year Hackney will see an unprecedented number of visitors, including journalists and business leaders. Race for Apps offers an opportunity for local app developers to highlight and sell their work to an international audience.

Cllr Guy Nicholson, Cabinet Member for Regeneration and the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, said: "Hackney’s creative tech businesses are world class and rightly deserve their reputation as being at the heart of UK innovation. Race for Apps provides the perfect platform from which to showcase this innovation and make a contribution to Hackney’s wider economy by encouraging and guiding visitors around the great town centres and neighbourhoods that make up our borough."

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