Do you remember the Cisco I-Prize contest, an open, global innovation contest developed to encourage collaboration among entrepreneurs and help identify new potential billion-dollar business ideas for Cisco?
A team of five university students from Mexico submitted the winning idea of a ‘Life Account‘ that gathers information about users through connected devices in the physical world and online data available in the virtual world. The winners receive a cash prize of $250,000.
Team name: Rhinnovation
Team country: Mexico
Team members: Five
Idea goal: To connect your real world with your virtual world
Claim to fame: Student innovators
Team Rhinnovation’s Cisco I-Prize submission, “Life Account” creates a physical and virtual platform that facilitates connectivity along with smart objects, people and information.
The inside story
When Rhinnovation team captain Darius Lau’s professor mentioned the Cisco I-Prize competition in class, Lau and his classmates immediately started thinking about potential ideas. After much brainstorming, Lau and his teammates Lizett Michel Gallegos, Claudia Alexandra Vargas Prieto, Guillermo Antonio Araiza Torres and Juan Rodrigo Huerta Manning decided to submit Life Account.
Life Account collects data about its users through devices that capture information both from the users’ activities in the physical and virtual world. This data is then aggregated to generate a virtual profile that understands habits and behavior patterns to conveniently blend the physical and virtual world for the user.
“Life Account will generate a database with improved and meaningful information about the market and customers,” Lau said. “Information can be filtered, reducing the complexity and response time of activities, while maximizing communication among people, companies and smart devices in order to detect underserved and unarticulated needs, expectations and desires about the products, and market research for its key partners, while always protecting the privacy of its users.”
Sharing the team’s idea with the world has been exciting, but Lau cautions that having a thick skin is a pre-requisite for any aspiring entrepreneur. “You will receive good or bad comments that can help to enrich the idea,” Lau said. “But giving up isn’t allowed.”
- The student team was led by Darius Lau of the Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey (ITESM), and included classmates Lizett Michel Gallegos, Claudia Alexandra Vargas Prieto, Guillermo Antonio Araiza Torres and Juan Rodrigo Huerta Manning.
- The winning concept was submitted in the Connected Life category. It combines social networking with the ‘Internet of Things’ to help bridge user activities in the physical and virtual world to create one view of the users ‘life’.
- In the second Cisco I-Prize competition, participants were given access to Cisco collaboration technologies, such as Cisco Pulse, Cisco Show and Share, Cisco WebEx, Flip Video cameras and Cisco TelePresence to foster greater collaboration among their teams.
- The Cisco I-Prize competition received more than 800 ideas and attracted close to 3,000 participants across 156 countries and six continents. Even two of the three smallest nations on earth, Andorra and Monaco, submitted business ideas.
- Cisco executives and industry leaders evaluated the business plan submissions, with the winner determined by their technological innovation as well as the promise of the new business opportunity for Cisco.
- Cisco also utilized a new “Idea Market,” powered by Spigit, which provided contest participants with the option to “invest” in the idea they deemed most deserving of the $250,000 grand prize. The Idea Market was sustained entirely by the Cisco I-Prize community who received IP Points to ‘invest’ in ideas, predicting which ideas have the most merit, based on the number of points invested in the idea.