A Recap of Pakistan Mobile App Awards 2016

To promote innovation in technology application and increase accessibility for persons with disabilities (PWDs), Ignite (Formerly National ICT R&D Fund), in collaboration with Special Talent Exchange Program (STEP), launched an initiative for mobile application development worth PKR 3.2 million. The program spanned over several months and made its way various cities across Pakistan, to hold workshops and trainings on mobile application development, that were customized to cater to the needs and challenges faced by PWDs,

This was split over two categories, mainly; Mobile Apps for persons with Visual Impairment, and Mobile Apps for persons with Physical Disabilities. Out of 28 submissions from all across Pakistan, 15 teams were able to develop a working model of their prototypes. In the final round 3 apps secured top positions while 2 apps received conciliatory prizes.

President Mamnoon Hussain, who graced the Pakistan Mobile App Awards Ceremony 2016 at Pakistan National Council of the Arts, said that focus on information technology for stability of national economy was a must. Use of ICTs is need of the hour to inform the young generation about modern learning and research trends.

Minister of State for Information Technology Anusha Rahman, Chairman Pakistan Telecommunication Authority Dr. Syed Ismail Shah, and CEO Telenor Irfan Wahab Khan also spoke at the occasion.

Awards ceremony was carried out by the President, where a cash prize of Rs. 300,000 was awarded to 1st position holder Dr. Abdul Ghaffar and his team for developing the app Smart Devices; which helps PWDs to switch on/off the electrical appliances such as fan, lights etc. Second position was won by Ms. Sumayya Munir with a cash prize of Rs. 200,000 for developing the app Tell Me; an android based voice application that helps people with visual impairment to know of their surroundings, whereas the 3rd position with cash prize of Rs. 100,000 was won by Hatham Nasar and his team for developing app Rollout (provides information about all those restaurants and hotels that facilitate the physically disabled persons).

Two apps received conciliatory prizes of Rs. 50,000 each; iCataract; that provides a simple and low-cost, self-operative cataract detection and diagnosis system and Accurate Position Marking (APM) that assists people going through the rehabilitation process in gait, hand injury and dislocated shoulder.