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BT launches apps and services competition for start-ups and small businesses

Press Release   •   Nov 09, 2016 13:03 GMT

BT has launched a competition for start-ups and small businesses to find new apps and services for BT customers in the UK.

The company is looking for innovations that help busy people stay in contact and feel connected to their family, friends and communities. BT says it is not about reinventing social networks, but more about smart devices and apps that people can use at home, at work or when out and about.

The winners will receive support and mentoring from BT, a possible trial of the service and six months’ membership of the TechHub entrepreneur community.

David McDonald, director of Broadband and Bundles, said: “BT’s voice, broadband, TV and mobile services connect millions of families. We’re looking for new services that help families, friends and communities share experiences.”

“Examples could be connected devices for different age groups, family safety apps, the linking of digital presence with the real world environment, and location information and services. They could include new ways of supporting or sharing life at home and on the go, or ideas to make the web more accessible.”

This is the 10th innovation challenge run by BT’s Infinity Lab. The programme aims to identify potential innovation partners. BT does not invest or take equity in the applicant companies as part of this process.

Will Pryke, head of the BT Infinity Lab, said: “We want to work with innovative companies and our customers through market trials. We’re looking for companies that have an early stage product and share our ambition to work with customers. The aim is to develop commercial partnerships for BT to use or sell these new services.”

Applicants are asked to complete a simple online form to describe their product or service and are optionally (but strongly advised) to provide a short video.

Each submission will be reviewed by a team of BT product and technology experts. Shortlisted companies will be called for interview with finalists presenting to a “dragons’ den” of BT executives at an event, which will be held in January 2017.

Launched in partnership with TechHub in September 2013, the previous nine BT Infinity lab competitions have attracted hundreds of applicants from around the world. From our most recent competitions, winner SeenIt is working with BT Sport to bring the voice of the fan into the studio. Our connected cities winner, See.Sense is in trial with MK Smart.

The winning company will receive:

  • Mentoring - support from BT research, engineering, commercial and marketing teams to help develop their product or service.
  • Support from BT to evaluate and trial the winning product or service.
  • Six months’ membership of the TechHub entrepreneur community with flexible desk space at its main London office and access to events. For more information visit: www.techhub.com

    Applicants should enter their details here to receive a full briefing. The closing date for entries is 10 December 2016.

About BT

BT’s purpose is to use the power of communications to make a better world. It is one of the world’s leading providers of communications services and solutions, serving customers in 180 countries. Its principal activities include the provision of networked IT services globally; local, national and international telecommunications services to its customers for use at home, at work and on the move; broadband, TV and internet products and services; and converged fixed-mobile products and services.BT consists of six customer-facing lines of business: Consumer, EE, Business and Public Sector, Global Services, Wholesale and Ventures, and Openreach.

For the year ended 31 March 2016, BT Group’s reported revenue was £19,042m with reported profit before taxation of £3,029m.

British Telecommunications plc (BT) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of BT Group plc and encompasses virtually all businesses and assets of the BT Group. BT Group plc is listed on stock exchanges in London and New York.

For more information, visit www.btplc.com