Meet your future clients

ABOUT THE CHALLENGE

Challenges should be solved together.

Vodafone and TNW have partnered in a one-of-a-kind program. We’re scouting for the world’s best IoT companies that provide solutions to innovation challenges that key players in the field are facing.

Together with ten partners, we’ve identified eleven challenges. Cutting-edge technologies and innovations are demanded to solve these problems, and this is where you come in.

If you believe you have what it takes to contribute to solving a challenge, we ask you to apply for that challenge. You may apply for as many as you like.

Vodafone, TNW, and the partners will invite the best companies to attend selection days in Amsterdam, early September. If selected during those days, Vodafone & TNW provide you with technical- and process support to successfully implement your solution within the partner's company. Such partnership could be a pilot, or full-scale implementation from the start.

In short: this is a chance for you to showcase your solution and implement it to solve a real-life innovation challenge. 

Expect hard work, a lot of fun, and if selected the ride of your life.

Challenge

Connected crates

Connected crates

"How can we develop a feasible crate tracking solution for our crates?"

Tracking the flows of returnable crates is of major value to HEINEKEN. In most parts of the world the crates travel from brewery to distributors (potentially multiple interlayers, >500 players) to the outlets were the products are sold. This is what HEINEKEN calls a fragmented route-to-market and distribution can happen under extreme conditions in terms of operations, weather et cetera. We look for a solution to track the flow of returnable crates that minimizes human involvement, is easy to use and robust and can be implemented at scale (thousands and thousands of crates, hundreds and hundreds of distributors) against a relevant cost.

Challenge

Surface water quality

Surface water quality

“How to measure surface water quality in our own neighborhoods by using the power of the crowd (local fishermen, surfers, etc.) in order to avoid environmental crime?”

"The dutch police is looking for crowd sourced water quality measurement solutions to detect illegal waste dumping & other environmental crimes. Solutions could include, but are not limited to smart sensors measuring water quality and transferring the information to a central database. We aim to involve water sports enthusiast, nature lovers, fishermen etc in the local water quality measurement. E.g. Imagine the crowd dropping a sensor in the water while near it, and this information being transmitted to their phones and into the cloud. Assessment criteria will be costs per unit and ease of use for the general public.

Challenge

Cylinders of the future

Cylinders of the future

“How can we harness smart technologies to provide insights in the location and fill levels of gas cylinders?”

Shv energy looking for smart technologies to provide insights in the location and fill levels of gas cylinders in order to facilitate new services such as the analysis of usage patterns in order to prevent running out of stock. Solutions may be attached directly to the cylinders, or to the pallets that they are transported on. Solutions for any type of cylinder are welcome. Shv energy is a leading dedicated global lpg distributor. In that capacity, it continuously aims to break new ground in developing existing and new markets for lpg around the world through effective innovation, education and promotion strategies. Shv energy operates in more than 20 countries, where it provides decentralised energy sources lpg, lng and biomass to tens of millions of customers.

Challenge

Monitoring health at home

Monitoring health at home

“How can we monitor health information in the home situation for prevention and incident response?”

Health Hub Utrecht is looking for solutions to better monitor patients at home. These solutions can include the usage of devices already present in homes of patients (smart phones), or hardware may be provided (should be low cost and easy to use). Focus for this challenge is hypertension, but not exclusively. Ideally, solution will both encourage tracking health, and educate about better lifestyle decisions.

Challenge

Measure water quality and flow

Measure water quality and flow

“How can we track the water flow and quality on its way from the production plants to homes and offices?”

We are looking for smart technologies to track the flow and the quality of the water on its way from the production plants to the homes and offices where it is consumed, including but not limited to 1) Tracking the volumes of water 2) Tracing potential leakages in the water pipelines 3) Measuring the quality of the water. Solutions should be easy to install and minimally invasive. Solutions can focus on measuring in the distribution network (pipes) or measuring in private homes (e.g. a smart sensor attached to a water tap). Vitens is the largest drinking water company in The Netherlands - delivering top quality drinking water to 5.6 million people.

Challenge

Smart and connected ships

Smart and connected ships

“How can we upgrade current fleets with smart sensors, collect data from these (or already existing) sensors and analyze and display in an easy manner"

Damen shipyards is looking for three different types of solutions. 1) Standardized platforms/software that can aggregate data from OEM sensors, analyze it and display in a nice and understandable fashion (please realize many different data sources!) 2) smart sensors that can substitute current 'dumb' OEM sensors, or run in parallel with them (any type of sensor welcome: predictive maintenance, temperature, etc.) 3) new technologies for connectivity on the open ocean (as opposed to old satellite). Potential solution: all ships connected through 'connected vessels network'. Focus is on the sensors aspect of the challenge.

Challenge

Smart airport wheelchairs

Smart airport wheelchairs

“How can our local support staff locate indoor operated electric carts and wheelchairs at Schiphol in real-time?”

Challenge

Preventing Downtime

Preventing Downtime

“How can we prevent downtime of our key attractions — like rollercoasters — by implementing predictive and preventive maintenance solutions?"

Attractions are the most important asset of the Efteling and play a fundamental role in the experience of guests. Unexpected downtime (or announced maintenance) are a nuisance and frustrating for our guests. In order to prevent this, the Efteling has a very extensive maintenance scheme and on-the-ground engineering crews that will fix issues immediately. As the world of Efteling is growing, this way of organizing maintenance becomes less cost effective and is not always able to predict and prevent (unexpected) maintenance and issues. The Efteling is looking for IoT technologies that can help meet this challenge. Smart or predictive maintenance are promising concepts that can elevate the way Efteling organizes its maintenance, prevent unexpected downtime and improve the guests’ experience

Challenge

Electricity usage fraud

Electricity usage fraud

“How can we identify electricity usage fraud through the use of smart sensors in our substations?”

Stedin is looking for solutions for electricity usage fraud / illegal electricity consumption detection. Potential solutions are 1) Electricity usage sensors to be installed at medium voltage and/or low voltage cabinets 2) Data pattern analysis solutions Key assessment criteria for consideration for use at stedin will be total cost of ownership per area as well as ease of installation.

Challenge

Visitor experience

Visitor experience

“How can we create a seamless event-visitor experience, including wayfinding and location-based services?”

De jaarbeurs is looking for innovative solutions to help create a seamless event-visitor experience. Solutions could involve, but do not have to be limited to: Wayfinding solutions (outdoor and indoor) Personalized information services Location based services In light of customer preferences and updated privacy regulations we will favor solutions that (can integrate with tools to) give control to the user about which information they want to share with whom and when. In line with solutions like: https://dappre.Com

Challenge

Capacity monitoring

Capacity monitoring

"How can we monitor in real-time the volume of visitors in each attraction (in the carts, etc.)? This should lead to insights about the percentage of the theoretical maximum capacity we are operating at."

The guest experience is negatively influenced by long waiting lines. Although the Efteling has a large capacity, its attractions are not always efficiently or effectively used. Currently there is of course monitoring on capacity, but this is limited to the steering system of the attractions themselves and don’t count guests that are actually taking a ride for example. It is also a reactive, not a proactive method. Especially on busy days, Efteling should be using its maximum capacity, but currently has no way to monitor and steer this real time. The Efteling is looking for IoT technologies that can make the next step and enable real time capacity monitoring in all attractions (scalable solution). The ultimate goal is to let guests experience less waiting time, and have more quality time to visit attractions with their families and have a splendid overall experience. 


Timeline

May 24

Opening of sign-ups

August 10

Deadline startup applications

September 5-6-7

Pitch event in Amsterdam + 2-day working sessions

Oct-Nov

2-Month Implementation phase for POC/Pilot

December

Grand Finale (Demoday of all solutions)

Phil Skipper

Head of Business Development IoT - Vodafone Global Enterprise
Phil Skipper

"IoT adoption will continue to accelerate with smaller organisations being able to harness the advantages of IoT technology to drive greater efficiency and value for their customers." 

A WIN / WIN / WIN SITUATION

The IoT Challenge is a unique collaboration between Vodafone and TNW, aimed to help IoT companies grow and reach new customers. At the same time, we boost large organizations to stay competitive in an era of rapid technological change. 

The Next Web is a tech media company that believes technology is making the world a better place. We bridge the gap between solutions and the corporate world by creating innovative programs like this.

Vodafone is one of the biggest players in the field of IoT. With their knowledge and technical expertise, Vodafone sparks innovative integrations between tech companies and corporates.

FAQ

When is the deadline for the application?

As a startup, you can apply until August 10th. However, we have a half-way evaluation July 12th. Applying before this time significantly increases your chances to be selected to pitch in Amsterdam.

Can we apply to multiple challenges?

Absolutely! We encourage you to apply to multiple challenges, if you have what it takes to solve them.

Are there any costs involved?

This opportunity is completely free of charge. Only if selected for the live pitches, September 5th, you could incur travel expenses to Amsterdam.

What happens on the grand finale day?

We’re working on a super engaging and cool event for that day, showcasing all the solutions and POCs.

When will we hear back from you regarding selections?

We close signups on August 10th. Please allow us about a week to evaluate, and expect to hear from us August 20th. Tip: keep 5/6/7 September free in your calendar!

What are the selection criteria for each challenge?

Each challenge has different criteria for evaluating the applications. Please read the description of each challenge to find out.

I have questions very specific (technical) questions, who can I ask?

Please send your questions to jeeyeon@thenextweb.com

What happens 5-7th of September?

The 5th of September will be a selection day. The best applicants are invited to pitch in real life to their potential client(s). This takes place in Amsterdam. At the end of the day one company per challenge will be selected as winner, and will continue working with the challenge partner for 2 days on forming an agreement. This will involve contract talks, financials, way-of-working, etc. We intend on starting 11 pilots or proof-of-concept projects. Funding for this is provided by the challenge partners.

What happens during the two month implementation phase?

TNW and Vodafone will guide you in working together with the challenge partner. This will likely take the shape of a weekly conference call facilitated by us.

What happens after the implementation phase is over?

We hope that the POC was successful and that you will continue a fruitful partnership with the partner.

What do you mean by the ‘partnership’ with these companies? What does the partnership look like in detail?

We make no promises here, but we intend on starting 11 pilot-like partnerships for all the different challenges. If your solution proves to work well, a partnership can take many different forms. Likely, the challenge partner will become your customer or perhaps even a reseller.