Samsung nurtures young Bada technopreneurs

KUALA LUMPUR: Teams from four local universties were the winners in a competition to showcase the most innovative applications based on Bada — Samsung’s new, open smartphone platform.

In the finale of the Bada Developer Varsity Challenge 2010, Team G-Polaris from Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) presented an application called Green Polaris, which provides location-based services, news briefs, greening tips, and links to environmentally-friendly companies.

Team Doa Nazihah (which means “An Honest Prayer”) from Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM) developed an application it called Doa Recital for Muslim Pilgrims to help those performing the Haj pilgrimage.

The Management and Science University (MSU) team, named Rois et Reine, developed The Pianist app that teaches users how to play the piano. And Team Smart from Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) unveiled a location-based mobile friend-finder application called Tell Me.

Team G-Polaris was the 1st place winner, followed by Team Doa Nazihah and Team Rois et Reine in 2nd and 3rd place, respectively. The Most Innovative Team Name and Logo prize went to Team Rois et Reine.

G-Polaris comprised Chai Jian Wei, Khoo Han Ni, and Peter Lau Yi Zhong, all 22, with their supervisor Azlan Osman. The three students are pursuing a degree in Computer Science.

They received RM15,000 cash while the second and third teams received RM10,000 and RM5,000, respectively.

The winning teams also received four units of the Samsung Wave smartphone each.

The challenge is supported by the Multimedia Development Corporation (MDeC), which is guardian of the country’s MSC Malaysia initiative, and industry regulator the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission.

It is to encourage university students to use their creativity and ingenuity to develop Bada applications for social networking and location-based services, as well as educational and religious activities.

“Samsung is actively constructing a total eco-system around the Bada platform ... making our platform vision a reality for consumers, developers and operators to experience the freedom of choice that Bada enables,” said Yu Jai Sul, managing director of Samsung Malaysia Electronics.

Saifol Bahri Shamlan, MDeC vice-president, said it is committed to the continued development of the ICT (information and communications technology) industry that will help the nation reach its goal of becoming a developed country by 2020.

“With that in mind, we support the initiative by Samsung to deliver cutting-edge technologies to Malaysia’s ICT industry and the public,” he said.

The entire challenge took three months of intense brainstorming and work. It received a total of 22 registrations from 18 varsities across Malaysia. Each team consisted of one advisor and three students to inculcate team work and synergy among lecturers and students.

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