UNICEF Innovation, British company ARM, and global design firm Frog, have partnered together in a charitable trifecta to launch the Wearables for Good challenge. The contest invites tech innovators, entrepreneurs, engineers, students and well, anyone really, to develop solutions that help people in resource constrained environments where wearable devices can create enormous benefits.
Denise Gershbein, executive creative director at Frog states, “Today, wearable technologies are primarily focused on applications such as fitness and the quantified self. However, there are countless opportunities for wearable and sensor technology to make more of an impact in emerging markets, particularly in the next wave of social impact development. With the ‘Wearables for Good’ challenge we hope to foster dialogue among new partners and increase cross-discipline innovation.”
All entries must be submitted through the UNICEF site and proposals should show innovative solutions, intelligent business planning, and potential for long-term success. Entrants must choose at least one focus area from the Wearables for Good Use Case Handbook in their proposals and partners are searching for “wearable products and/or technology that can address emerging and new markets like never before.” The product must follow the below application requirements:
- Can be executed “en masse” in low cost areas, with a demonstrated business case and need.
- Is waterproof, shockproof, weatherproof, heat resistant, easily stored, and built to last.
- Runs off a battery, has long battery life (possible alternate energy), is power efficient where there is no power.
- Can be applied to varying environments and communities, consider a larger ecosystem, easily produced/developed, easy to use, easy to maintain (fixed and addressed by local skill force.)
The challenge will run over six months, with winners receiving a cash and idea incubation prize package to be supplied by the three challenge partners, plus additional incubation prizes from other partners who will be announced over the coming months. Have what it takes to change the world? Applications will be accepted until August 4th 2015. Winners will be announced Fall 2015.