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US$200K up for grabs in the Huawei HMS App Innovation Contest (Apps UP) for MEA developers

gulftech, Dubai, UAE: Huawei announced the launch of the 2021 edition of Huawei HMS App Innovation Contest (Apps UP), a leading worldwide competition for mobile app developers. Apps UP will see talented developers compete against each other to create seamless, smart, innovative digital experiences that improve lives in a variety of ways, and explore the future applications of digital intelligence.

The competition is once again split across five geographical regions, with up to US$200,000 in cash prizes up for grabs for developers in each, including the Middle East & Africa (MEA) region. Awards will be across eight categories: Best App, Best Game, Best Social Impact App, Excellent Student Award, and Honorable Mention, with multiple cash prizes within each category. A Tech Women’s Award has been added to this year’s edition, which aims to recognize outstanding women in tech. Best HMS Core Innovation Award and All-Scenario Coverage Award have also been introduced to the 2021 edition of the competition. Individual prize amounts range from US$3,000 to US$15,000. Contestants can enter individually or as part of a team of up to three members.

“We are very excited to announce the return of the 2021 edition of the Huawei HMS App Innovation Contest (Apps UP) for innovative mobile-focused developers in the region.” said Adam Xiao, Managing Director of Huawei Mobile Services in the Middle East and Africa, Huawei Consumer Business Group. “We saw an incredible response to last year’s competition and were amazed at the quality of submissions that covered a great deal of different types of apps. With attractive cash prizes, access to state-of-the-art development tools, and the opportunity for winning apps to be featured on HUAWEI AppGallery, the official Huawei application marketplace, there is enormous benefit for developers who participate.”

Those participating in the competition will be able to access the power of HMS Core, a leading development environment for Huawei phones. HMS Core enables safe and seamless implementation of features such as secure sign-in, in-app payments and downloads, ad placement, alerts, real-time positioning, and cloud backup. Crucial for app and content creators, HMS Core is designed to facilitate efficient app development, enabling developers to focus on creating the best user experiences.

As part of Huawei’s commitment to empower and support rising developers, the tech giant is providing a series of workshops, training modules and courses on its developer website. The training series acts as a starting-line for global and regional developers, underpinning Huawei’s global vision that effectively fosters their development and enhances their skillset, transforming them into certified developers. Interested developers can attend and complete these virtual courses to build applications using the HMS kits and participate in the contest.

Participants can register and submit entries between 10th June and 20th August 2021. Winners are then selected in October 2021, through a combination of public voting and a panel of judges made up of industry leaders drawn from each region.  

In the 2020 edition, more than 3,000 individuals and teams from over 170 countries entered the Huawei HMS App Innovation Contest (Apps UP). The total global prize pool last year was US$1 million, with US$200,000 allocated to each of the five geographical regions that the contest covered.

“When we were originally planning the contest, one of our key objectives was to attract developers from all over the world, which is why we have five geographies, with diverse categories and prizes in each,” continued Adam Xiao. “We believe that this approach has paid off as one of the most positive aspects of last year’s competition was the submission of so much localised, culturally and regionally-relevant content. We look forward to seeing what talented developers have been working on this past year, particularly in emerging markets.”

Among last year’s winners in the MEA region were the ‘My Pregnancy Journey’ app, developed by a South African woman for African women; AMAN, a healthcare app for patients and care providers; and Deaf Sign Language, an app that facilitates communication for and with those who are hard of hearing. Other winners included an app that tracks power availability in a specific area, a virtual assistant to comprehend various Arabic dialects, and an English-Arabic dictionary that can translate content from other apps.

By May 2021, Huawei doubled their year-on-year growth by registering over 4 million developers and integrating 134,000 applications with the HMS Core worldwide. This further cements HMS ecosystem as the third largest mobile application ecosystem worldwide.

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