Armenia hosts three tech competitions in December!

Could there be more evidence that the Armenian tech/start-up scene is booming? Just ask yourself if such small country could ever host three start-up events at the same time! iTechnology.am was there to cover the events and bring you the results of both Hackathon [YAN] 2012, competition for innovative ideas and projects and Armenian Technology Startups 2012. The awards ceremony for the winners of both contests took place on 26 December 2012 at Marriott Hotel in Yerevan.

ArmNet Awards 2012

On December 8,  the third annual ArmNet Awards was taking place. The competition organized by Orange Armenia rewarded the best websites created and developed in Armenia. From among the 540 applications, the international judging panel chose eight websites in seven different categories and presented two special awards to websites that have a major social impact. And the Winners are…

“Grand Prix ArmNet Awards 2012” category
The “We Are The Owners Of This City” Facebook group was chosen as the best website of 2012, receiving the highest number of panel votes across all the categories.

Orange Armenia special prize for the best mobile site
Orange awards the prize for the best mobile site to a website for its version for mobile devices. The aim is to encourage others to develop their own websites in a similar fashion. This year, the Orange special prize for the best mobile application was awarded to Mynewsmobile .

“Breakthrough of the year” category:
menu devoted to food and eateries.

“Innovation” category:  citybugs a tweet aggregator providing real-time notifications of traffic problems in the capital.

“Technological development” category: e-payments an online payment system for administrative taxes and charges.

“Best content” categorykarabakhrecords in memory of the Armenian genocide.

“Social impact” categoryonearmenia works to develop cultural, educational, humanitarian and environmental projects.

“People’s choice” category: For the second consecutive year, the public were given the chance to decide on an award by voting via text message. 9,824 customers took part to vote for the winner, premierleague , which received the most number of votes, narrowly beating iconsofarmenia , publisher of the best seller “Armenia’s Brand Book” which recounts the entire history of the people of Armenia.

“2012 ArmNet Awards special awards” category: 
avc-agbu and ankakhutyun received special recognition from the panel for their vital roles they play in their respective fields.

“Design and usability” category: bang2joom.

Hackathon [YAN] 2012

The Hackathon [YAN] 2012, was jointly organized by Microsoft Innovation Center Armenia (MICA), Microsoft RA, Enterprise Incubator Foundation (EIF), mLab Regional Mobile Application Laboratory for ECA and Public Journalism Club (PJC). The competition started on December 22 and, for 24 hours non-stop, the 37 participating teams (totalling 130 participants) developed  prototypes/demo versions of their ideas into applications and/or mobile applications. On 23 December the projects were  assessed by a panel of experts.

All the participants of the contest will be given an exceptional chance to introduce their projects to the Bulgarian Eleven Accelerator Venture Fund. Additionally, Yeva Hyusyan, director of Microsoft Innovation Center Armenia, assured that the center is open for all the teams. The center will continue supporting them by giving consulting support and advisory.

Here are the winners with their respective nominations:

Best Microsoft technology application: A game presented by Kinect Air Combat team, which puts gamers in the role of a military pilot to eliminate the obstacles in the airspace and destroy the enemy.
Best Windows 8 application: A game named “Shelly” by the ApolloSoft team. Gamers can plays as the fish Shelly through adventures in the ocean.

Best Windows phone application (2 winners): An interactive game presented by s.a.k.u. RAI team, which has the “4 seasons” game as a background. This game can be used both to access weather forecasts and also as a desktop application. And a game presented by the Gardeners team, where the gardener is struggling against the pests in his garden.

Best Android application (2 winners): An entertaining game presented by the team Virtual Punch which uses augmented reality. And a game presented by the team SpiritSpanner, an application for the traditional game “Who? With whom? where? what were they doing? what did he say?”

Best rural development mobile application (2 winners):
The mTech team presented an application for rapid response in case of health problems and emergencies.
Save Life team presented an application which gave an opportunity to gather proper information on blood donors.

Best media project, the award provided by PJC and Knight Mozilla OpenNews: TweetHood application which gives the opportunity to collect tweets by geographical localization.

The winners listed above received money grants.

ATS Award 2012

Simultaneously during the Hackathon [YAN] 2012, the Armenian Technology Startups Award “ATS 2012” was taking place. The contest was jointly organized by the Association of Technology Start-ups of Armenia and USAID in the framework of Enterprise Development and Market Competitiveness Project, aimed at both summarizing the start-up related activities of the year and acknowledge the best Armenian IT start-up businesses.

Eligibility criteria: Armenian technology companies or technology-enabled innovative projects, privately owned, with maximum of three-year period of activity, registered in Armenia or with at least one Armenian on the team and less than 30 employees.

The organizers selected four nominations for the participants, but only three had winners. Here is the list of nominated categories and their respective winners:

Best Business to Business (B2B) solution: “Clean H2O” team. “Clean H2O”, is a hardware-software solution that provides any Windows phone user the ability to test the quality of water. Moreover, the user can input the data regarding the water quality into an Azure database, which will be available to experts and users worldwide. The solution will provide information about nearby water sources, waterborne diseases, raise awareness and allow the collection of statistics that can be used by organizations working in the sector.

Best Business to Consumer (B2C) solution: “Zyabs” team. The team introduced “Learn Armenian” app. The app  is a teaching tool to help your child learn Armenian Alphabet and Language. The app includes more than 230 words plus 38 short poems corresponding to each letter. This app is designed for both iPhone and iPad.
Best Business to Government (B2G) solution: no winner

People’s choice: “Ankashar.am” team. The aim of the project is to create a map of corruption alarms, where each citizen, faced with a corruption case in educational system, can send an alarm message. After filtering received messages, they immediately appear on the website. Institutions with high amount of alarms will be shown on the map. The project is aimed at dealing with corruption problems in the educational system.

This is Armenia’s first dedicated award ceremony to reward excellence in the IT start-up community.
iTechnology congratulates all the participants and the winners for their achievement and wishes success in future endeavors!