A group of talented young Puerto Ricans got a chance to demonstrate their technological and creative savvy in mobile applications during the second edition of the “App Idol, Reloaded” competition sponsored by Microsoft Puerto Rico, the Economic Development and Commerce Department and the Puerto Rico Gamers Association.
This year’s winners created apps to help tourists map out their routes using public transportation, another to help identify bad roads and a college curriculum organizer. In the videogame category, the three winners developed adventure, puzzle and card games.
Aside from creating apps and videogames, this year’s Idol App competition included an education track to help the young developers see their handowork as the springboard to creating their own business, organizers said.
The winning teams in the apps category were: the PRGO team, comprised of Germán Vázquez and Elioth Collazo, with their Puerto Rico GO app; Spark, by Jean Pagán, who developed the Project Roadmap app; and the Beyond Reference team of Miguel Figueroa and Ángel Rivera, who developed the OCU app to help college students organize their curriculum.
In the videogames category, the winners were: the Patternmethics team of Esteban Maldonado, Victor González, David González and Viviannette Montalvo who developed the “Patternites” game; the Deakii team of Jonathan Díaz, Stephan Elías and José García, who developed the Code Epsilon: Genesis game; and the Un3xpected Studios team of Luis Cruz, Alexis Miranda and Antonio Centeno, who developed the Scoria game.
The winners got $3,000, $1,500 and $750 in cash for their 1st, 2nd and 3rd place wins. Another five teams that reached the finals received $400 each.
The event is an an effort to ensure that this growing industry develops significantly on the island and in the process, talented individuals in this discipline are discovered and helped along, organizers said.
“In Microsoft, we see App Idol Reloaded as a platform to develop micro technology companies,” said Yamille Morales, director of new technologies for Microsoft. “Un just one year, we’ve been able to support the creation of more than six such companies. We’re committed to continue supporting this initiative to be able to develop local talent in the apps and videogame industry.”