11. Best Mobile Innovation for Emerging Markets

The internet is the most important enabler of social development and economic growth of our time. Mobile is making a vital contribution to its access, and as a result, to the social and economic development of countries and nations throughout Asia.

Already 3.2 billion people are online globally – 2.4 billion of them through mobile – directly benefiting from and contributing to the digital economy. Some 4 billion people remain offline, unable to participate and unaware of the opportunities.

The opportunities, enabled by mobile, to reach societies, communities and people to deliver communications that make a significant positive difference regardless of their age, language, abilities, geographic location or economic status, are increasingly the focus of new and innovative business models and technologies. This category recognises genuine innovation in mobile initiatives, programmes, products, apps, services and devices that are having a tangible effect on the inclusion, accessibility and vitality of countries throughout Asia and their digital economies, societies, cities and rural development.

This includes all forms of technology, device, service and app innovation that has fuelled the drive to ‘connect the unconnected’, bringing affordable mobile voice and data communications to people for the very first time, as well as services and initiatives that have had a proven effect on the empowerment of people, as well as their social and economic well-being.

Entry Deadlines & Key Dates

The Deadline for entries is Wednesday 19 April 2017 (at 5pm CST). The Shortlist will be published at the beginning of June 2017.  The Winners will be announced at the Mobile World Congress Shanghai on Wednesday 28th June 2017.


This category is for commercially available products and services, or live and tangible initiatives and programmes that have been launched in at least one market of the Asia region by the end of March 2017. Please provide evidence in your entry to support this Entries must also utilise, support, deploy or be accessible through mobile technologies based on open industry standards.

Eligible entrants include

  • Mobile network operators
  • Manufacturers, Device Vendors
  • Application Developers
  • Entrepreneurs and businesses
  • Vertical Sector organisations bringing mobile based solutions to market
  • NGOs, Academic institutions, foundations, and philanthropists
  • Social enterprises and communities
  • Others in the mobile eco-system


The judges will be looking at how well entries meet the key criteria, as follows:

  • Genuine innovation in mobile product or services and business models to meet the needs of lower income market segments, remote or underserved communities, business or people in Asia, or
  • Genuine innovation in new and tangible programmes or initiatives that extend the reach or value of being connected by mobile to the above users
  • Entries that demonstrate a clear and tangible effect on the inclusion, accessibility and vitality of emerging markets through mobile
  • Entries that demonstrate sustainability in the business model for the long term, and that are scalable or replicable
  • Entries that illustrate unique and high impact, successful use of mobile as a force for good

Supporting Materials

You can submit additional materials to support your entry through direct upload on the entry form. Please keep supporting information submitted to a maximum of:

  • A link to one x 3 minute (maximum) video
  • Up to three x 1 page documents (word, pdf, ppt) with further information, images, graphics etc.
  • Up to three x web pages (which should be very specific to the entry) linked by URLs

Video: Please provide a URL link to your video on the entry form (e.g. via YouTube, Vimeo or other public, English language video platforms) and if required, please make sure you provide a password. Videos should ideally be in the English language or with English subtitles.

Other supporting information Documents can include data, extracts from analysts’ reports, testimonials or press articles, graphics etc. Please do make sure this supporting information is succinct and clear.

Web pages: If pointing judges to a website within your supporting materials or entry, please include a URL which is to very specific information relating to your entry, up to a maximum of three web pages, as judges will not have time to search websites looking for the pertinent information.

The on-line entry form includes an upload facility for you to provide the above links and documents. You will have the ability to upload three additional files to accompany your entry. These can be pdfs, jpegs, Word documents or PowerPoint, but please, as above, keep these relevant to your entry.

Preview of Entry Form Questions

Enter here

  • What is the name of your entry for Best Innovation for Emerging Markets? Please note the name given here will be used in all awards materials and publicity? (approx 25 words)
  • Is this a joint entry? If so, who are the partnering organisations? (approx 25 words)
  • Please describe as succinctly as possible what the entry does, and how it works? (approx. 100 words)
  • What specifically did you set out to achieve with this programme, initiative, product or service? Who is it designed to serve? (approx 100 words)
  • Please confirm that the subject of the entry was deployed, or will be, in “live” service or implementation and available on at least one Asian market  for clients, customers, organisations or end users to buy or access up to end March 2017, and in which specific markets or countries? (approx. 100 words)
  • Please confirm that your entry utilises, supports, deploys or is accessible through mobile (cellular) technologies based on open industry standards? (approx. 100 words)
  • In what specific ways do you consider your entry to be innovative i.e. in technology terms, business model, or other etc? (approx 250 words)
  • How has the entry contributed to narrowing the ‘access and opportunities gap’ within a specific specific segment of the market (approx 250 words)
  • How has the issue of sustainability been integrated into the strategy to make it viable for the long term? (approx 250 words)
  • How has the solution demonstrated tangible, measurable social or economic value in Asia, over the last year? Please provide some clear social & economic data reflecting the success of the service, product, project or initiative to support your entry (approx 250 words)
  • Describe how it supports the value of mobile connectivity, as a force for good? (approx 250 words)