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Vodafone Digital Award winners revealed

The winners of this yearʼs Vodafone Digital Award, offering a total prize money of HUF 15 million, were announced, with the company awarding health, education, and sustainability projects, as well as initiatives built on 5G.

Out of the nearly 150 entries received, a total of 10 were awarded: eight in one of three categories: Digital Society, Inclusion for All and Planet and Sustainability. In addition, a Vodafone Employee Special Award and a 5G Special Award were also granted, according to a press release sent to the Budapest Business Journal.

"As a technology company, we witness the challenges faced by our society every day, and all sectors must play their part in embracing these issues for the sake of common advancement," explained Amanda Nelson, CEO of Vodafone Hungary. "The Vodafone Foundations have launched a number of programs around the world that make a difference in day-to-day life, supporting equal opportunities, sustainability, and the creation of a digital society and thus a better future."

"One of these programs is the Vodafone Digital Award, which we set up at the end of 2018 with the goal of incentivizing and recognizing innovators who, through their digital projects, offer a solution to a challenge faced by society," she added. 

Gergő J. Budai, vice chairman of the board of Vodafone Hungary Zrt. and curator of the Vodafone Hungary Foundation, said, "The most significant challenge of 2020 is the pandemic, beyond doubt, and the health and economic fallout we see in our day-to-day lives. Therefore, we were delighted to receive a number of entries this year that support the digitalization of healthcare, including some excellent applications, smart medical devices, and telemedicine systems. In addition, a number of solutions supporting digital education, such as digital curricula, robotics, VR, and AR-supported educational applications, were submitted to the Jury."

Károly Balázs Solymár, the Deputy State Secretary for Digitalization of the Ministry of Innovation and Technology, comments, "One of the elementary technological platform of the modern society is digitalization, in some way, everything can be connected to it, we can say, that it is an integral part of our lives, which has got such beneficial benefits that we have to put at the service of our own development. The Vodafone Digital Award is such a prestigious acknowledgment by which we evaluate those applications and applicants, that look at digitalization as an opportunity and exploit the synergy between society and technology creating a bridge between the digital society, equality, and sustainable development."

"Digital Society" category

In the Digital Society category, the Vodafone Foundation welcomed innovative digital solutions that would benefit the whole of society and make our day-to-day lives easier through the use of digital devices.

The winner of the category was DokiLab Kft. with the DokiApp telemedicine application, which matches patients with physicians available through the app at any given time, and offers video consultation in a closed and secure system.

The categoryʼs runner-up was Móra-BOOKR Kids Kft. The companyʼs BOOKR School is an application that uses interactive, animated audiobooks and a teacher admin platform to help students get to love reading. The project will focus on the development of interactive digital curricula for 7th and 8th grade students.

The podium was completed by the e-Fásli innovation of 19-year-old Melinda Szegedi. E-Fásli is a compress with digital temperature control. As temperature control happens through an app, the difficulties of traditional heat therapy are avoided, thanks to digitalization.

"Inclusion for All" category

In the Inclusion for All category, the Vodafone Foundation accepted digital applications that support an underprivileged group, such as our disabled peers or those living in poverty.

The winner of the category was the IT Foundation for the Visually Impaired with a software solution that generates ready-to-be-listened-to audiobooks from paper documents, either in the well-recognized mp3 format or in the unique Daisy format used by the visually impaired.

In second place, ExaMe Learning Kft. made a platform called ExaMe, which allows students to prepare for their secondary school maturity exams through a single application, using the materials uploaded to the app by publishers and teachers via a dedicated platform. With the help of the award, applicants plan to provide free learning materials to 500 underprivileged graduating students.

The third awarded entry to the category was the Safe at Home home help system by the Hungarian Charity Service Association of the Order of Malta. The system aims to help older people live independent lives, strengthen their sense of security and, if necessary, help them in critical life situations - all with the opportunities offered by telecommunications.

"Planet and Sustainability" category

In the Planet and Sustainability category, organizers accepted innovative digital solutions that contribute to the widespread promotion of environmental awareness and environmental protection. The Vodafone Hungary Foundation awarded a shared first place in this category.

One of the winners was ff.next with green banking solution EcoMate. EcoMate is an innovative, mobile-first solution that combines financial and environmental awareness education. The application allows users to monitor personal finances and comes with a solution tracking personal carbon emissions.

The other winner was WWF Hungary Foundation with the WWF Footprint app. The application is a unique tool and the first solution that can calculate our individual ecological footprint using actual local data, which also provides everyday useful tips and regular challenges aiming to reduce the user’s footprint.

Special awards

Two special awards were also granted at the gala. The application, which won the Special Employee Award, was selected by Vodafone employees through an internal vote.

The winner of the special award will receive assistance from Vodafoneʼs mentoring team, supporting the implementation and development of the project over a period of six months.

The winner of the Special Employee Award is Emese Pancsaʼs smart composting tool called Compocity, which simplifies and makes the composting process widely available, thus making a significant contribution to an environmentally conscious lifestyle.

Through the Vodafone Digital Award, the Vodafone Hungary Foundation aims to identify and reward ready-made innovations that offer a solution to a significant social challenge. About 42% of the close to 150 entries, which represent an extremely high level of participation, came from individuals, while 22% were submitted by businesses and startups, and 36% by NGOs, respectively.

This year, the 5G Special Award went to OrthoPred Kft.ʼs artificial intelligence and 5G-supported examination system called PORC-O-GO, aimed at the early diagnosis of incorrect movement patterns and abnormal locomotor changes based on video recordings, using real-time data processing and feedback.

The 5G network did not only inspire a special award, it also had a role in setting up Hungaryʼs first real 5G concert at the gala, where Irie Maffia singer Sena and the bandʼs guitarist Ádám Szekér played music for the audience together, but from two different venues, using 5G connection.