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Nokia seeks apps, ideas for next billion

Applications for the Nokia Series 40 feature phones (Nokia Java phones) are expected to increase, both locally and internationally as a result of the "Nokia Create 4 Millions" challenge.

The Nokia Create 4 Millions challenge is geared to connect the best consumer-generated app ideas with top Nokia developers. Nokia will be running a localized version of the same challenge in Kenya which will see the top team win a fully all expenses paid trip to London for the World finals.Applications can be submitted in four categories: health and education (access to knowledge); social networking; news and location, games and infotainment. The announcement was made Friday at the iHub by Nokia Communication Manager for East and Southern Africa, Dorothy Ooko.

Winners of the Kenyan challenge will be announced on September 2nd 2011 while the global challenge will take place on October 26 in London.There will be 10 cash prizes, with a top prize of 50,000 euros in each category. Top apps in each category win a variety of non-cash prizes such as user experience reviews and app marketing assistance. Besides awards for the best applications, there are three special categories that target applications that best utilize two new Nokia features. These are awards for best use of touch, best use of location in its new Nokia maps and best series 40 web app. The first two will win 25,000 euros each and the top web app will win 50,000 euros and a browser bookmark in a relevant country.

The challenge also targets non-developers who can submit application ideas for a chance to win. Ideas can be submitted in three categories: health and education, social networking, games and infotainment. Authors of the winning entries may see their ideas come to life at Nokia World later on this year and can meet the developers who created them. In addition to a free expenses-paid trip to Nokia World, winning consumer's can play with their new app on the latest Nokia Series 40 phone given during Nokia World.

Ms Ooko confirmed that Nokia was working on better devices that would target the middle to low end markets. Nokia intend to introduce predominant smartphone features to the Series 40 phones, starting with the Nokia X2-01, Nokia C3 and the Nokia C3-01 that will be launched in Kenya in about a month's time. Such features will include touch and ability to run background applications. The Nokia X2-01 and C3-01 both come with touch screens and background chat

Nokia's Series 40 phones have experienced more than 35 percent growth in download volumes in the past two months making up about a quarter of the total downloads from Nokia's Ovi Store. Nokia is currently the world's largest manufacturer of mobile phones in the world with Africa and Asia providing the bulk of its middle and low end market. Nokia's market share in Africa is about 50% with feature phones been dominant. Nokia is seeking to buoy this market by having more applications available.

More information about the competition is available at http://www.nokia.com/create4millions.


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