A team of three former and current Victoria University of Wellington students are $10,000 richer after taking out the top prize in a competition to create a mobile app that will enhance students’ experience of the capital city.
The Cap App Challenge attracted a strong field of competitors and the top six finalists presented in front of a panel of judges in a dragons’ den style event that took place at Victoria University last week.
Victoria graduate George Feast-Parker, former student Katherine Anderson and current part time law student Gabrielle Young took out the top prize with their app Sesame.
The team describes its app as a real world treasure map that allows users to leave checkpoints on a live map and then link to content such as messages, songs or videos.
“Sesame encourages students to get outside and explore all the amazing things Wellington has to offer, while providing an opportunity to share and receive meaningful content in a unique way,” team members explained in their presentation.
The winning trio met and came up with the idea for Sesame while taking part in a nine-week intensive software development course - they have since all found jobs in the technology sector.
Along with the overall award, two other finalist teams were awarded $2,500 each.
George Nelson and Marcus Jackson took out the Design Award with their app XP, which matches students with potential internships and work related opportunities.
The People’s Choice Award went to Flora Lu and Ekta Nathu for their app Cofi, which shows users which Wellington cafes have the best coffee and wifi access.
After each team presented its app idea, the judging panel, which included representatives from Victoria University and Wellington’s technology industry, got the chance to question the presenters on the viability of their idea.
When making their decisions the judges took into account how innovative the idea was, how likely it was to be used and how much scope it had to be developed for different purposes and users.
Along with the cash prize, there is also the potential for teams to work with Victoria to develop their application.
The overall winners are already working on an online prototype of Sesame.
“We hope people get super creative with it,” Anderson adds.