27. February 2012–
Berlin joined seven cities around the world at the weekend to host the action-packed BeMyApp Mobile App Olympics. Organised by San Francisco-based Vera Glavova, the 'multi-disciplinary event' connected a global community of high-potential app-makers for open collaboration.
Berlin-based entrepreneur David Link helped bring together 50 participants on Friday night at Ahoy! coworking space for 48hours of idea pitches, developments and demos from 10 teams of hackers, designers.
The result? Winners 'Unlock your brain' are representing Berlin in the global App Olympics. Voting begins today – worldwide – with the big winner to be announced on Wednesday.
Here's the event's top five:
1st place: Unlock Your Brain
Congratulations to the first placed team! This Android app helps children's development by periodically interrupting mobile use with sets of brain tasks to solve. The child's phone remains locked until these tasks are complete. The four-strong team consists of developers Emiliano Saurin and Georg Nordhausen, marketing specialist Ramzi Dziri, and ex-Rocket idea generator and product specialist Simon Smend. Deserved winners indeed, and Berlin's entry to the worldwide App Olympics.
2nd place: Toothbrushy
Toothbrushy won the prize for best UI, and the audience agreed. The entertaining app visualised a scenario where children could eat sweets and then brush their teeth, representing the plaque as sprites across the teeth which are eliminated by rubbing across them three times.
It aims to teach responsible toothcare through visual imagery, although we find ourselves thinking that there's no real substitute for teaching a child oral hygiene the old fashioned way. The greatest potential for this app would be to sell it to a toothpaste company like Colgate - which they would probably snap up before the demo's complete.
3rd place: frapny
Frapny (Find Really Awesome People Near You) was presented convincingly by the charismatic marketing consultant Christoph Sollich. Frapny, like Badoo, is a location-based app which allows you to connect to like-minded people in your vicinity.
The user posts a 'frap' which is a 140-character statement of intent, and can be seen by other users nearby who can then connect with eachother and make great ideas come to life. Frapny was developed for use on two platforms (Windows and Android) by a team of two developers over two days. Impressive to say the least!
4th place: Trump Mates
Trump Mates is a two-person card game which utilizes your twitter profile. In it, twitter followers are randomly matched with those of the other player and the winner of each hand is determined by a predefined parameter such as 'number of followers' or 'tweets per day'. This was a popular presentation with the audience, although monetization could be an issue.
5th place: betataste.me
Betataste.me is a beta testing platform presented by the impressive Italian Dario Galbiati Alborghetti. The aim is to connect people who enjoy beta testing web and mobile applications with application developers who need beta testers; a wonderfully simple and useful concept.
The rest: Kinderfee, Givebackapp, Forgetmenot, Magic
Kinderfee is an existing web platform which enables parents to find Babysitters and keeps a percentage of money exchanged. It's an already established business with a user base. They developed their iPhone app over the weekend with the help of two external developers, and although they surprisingly didn't place, it still made an extremely useful app.
Giveback App offers users a reward-based system of retrieving lost phones. Although the presentation was good, the UI needed some work.
Forgetmenot offers users a way of reminding themselves to stay in touch with loved ones, a form of relationship flossing, while Magic gives users a way of exchanging contacts, sort of like bump. The USP is that it notifies users when their contacts are nearby and asks "would you like to meet this person?".
As a developer, I would love to see more hackathons in Berlin. It's a great opportunity to take a break from other major work commitments and work on something cool for just a weekend while meeting other developers and seeing lots of great ideas.
For another weekend event that happened earlier in the day, check out: