If you're a software developer thinking about getting into programming for Apple's popular iPhone and iPod Touch platforms, give O2 a call – the mobile provider is offering £10,000 to the creator of the best app in its “App Showdown
As reported over on V3.co.uk
, the UK arm of mobile giant O2 is running a contest throughout August which looks to introduce a neat, preferably O2-themed application into the iPhone marketplace. With suggestions on the official site
ranging from “an interactive O2 coverage map
” - which would appear to be manageable as a Google Maps mashup – to “an app that records any sleep-talking you do
,” and the promise that contestants are “free to enter any kind of iPhone app you like
” there's certainly scope for innovation.
That said, O2 is putting heavy emphasis on apps which promote its services or improve the lot of its customers specifically, stating that the “key criteria for the winner will be an app that can help build a lasting relationship between O2 and its iPhone customers.
” Accordingly, suggestions which tie the company's existing offerings – such as a package which automatically checks the status of your O2 wired broadband connection, or syncs the iPhone to the company's Joggler device – are the most likely to walk away with the prize.
The move comes ahead of O2's exclusivity deal with Apple expiring, and it's a clear sign that the company is attempting to innovate its way to the top of the pile: when rival mobile providers have the ability to compete on price with iPhone packages, O2 will have either perform some major trimming on its margins or offer something unique to the market.
The competition is open to all UK residents aged over 18 and with an Apple Developer Program Portal account with at least 95 free device slots for the use of competition judges – interestingly, made up of the company's iPhone customers rather than employees.
Does the thought of a £10,000 top prize get your head swimming with O2-themed ideas for iPhone apps, or are do you think that's something of a cheap price for the application that's likely to keep O2 on the top of the iPhone pile? Share your thoughts over in the forums