Maker Village hosts Hardware Startup Contest

Maker Village hosts Hardware Startup Contest

Promising early-stage hardware startups stand to win exciting prizes, a chance to get an acceleration program in the US as well as compete for a $50,000 grand prize, at the AlphaLabGear National Hardware Cup, a prestigious competition that is being conducted in India for the first time this month.

Electronics incubator Maker Village in Kochi, Kerala, will host the India finals of the AlphaLabGear Hardware Cup on March 27.

Entries are open to hardware entrepreneurs from all over the country who can apply on . The deadline for registration is March 23.

The AlphaLabGear National Hardware Cup is an annual pitching contest conducted in seven cities in the US to identify and nurture talented early-stage startups that have created at least one physical product.

The fact that India has been chosen to host the first such competition outside the US is a sign of the growing global interest in the country as a source of hardware innovation, especially given the government’s current thrust on boosting ESDM (Electronic Software Design and Manufacturing) as well as flagship programmes such as Make in India and Digital India, said Maker Village Chief Consultant Prof S. Rajeev.

Dr Jayasankar Prasad, CEO of Kerala StartUp Mission, said the support from Kerala government to IT sector over the past years has transformed the state into an emerging technology innovation hub. Prestigious startup support programmes like the AlphaLabGear Hardware Cup coming to Kerala signal the maturing ESDM environment in the state.

Kochi is a software powerhouse with major IT zones such as Infopark, Smart City and Kerala Technology Incubation Zone operational there. It is now getting an ESDM push with hubs such as Maker Village and a proposed Rs 160 crore electronics manufacturing cluster and major companies like SFO with operations in the city, said Dr M S Rajasree, Director of IIITMK, which is imparting the leading-edge skills needed to integrate intelligent devices with data analytics.

Maker Village, a project funded by the Ministry of Electronics and IT (MeitY), Govt of India, and the Government of Kerala, has facilities in Cochin and Trivandrum to incubate and supports startup companies in electronics such as in IoT, robotics and wearables. It is administered by IIITMK, a leading post graduate educational institute established by the Government of Kerala to impart higher education in the area of Information Technology and Management.

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