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View from India: ITC Infotech unveils ‘iTech 2017’

ITC Infotech has announced the third edition of its flagship annual co-creation and technology innovation platform, ‘iTech 2017’. The event will take place at the ITC Infotech campus in Bangalore on July 22 and 23.

The event will run two parallel tracks, which include a Codeathon and startup ‘Showcase’ segment. The Codeathon encourages participants to create code components for complex business applications. Brownie points include cash prizes worth Rs 6 Lakh, along with on-spot internship and job opportunities. The winning startup will get a grant of Rs 5 lakh for a paid proof of concept (POC) and an opportunity to work with the company to accelerate technology innovation.

Through this new dimension, startups can explore newer technologies and tweak them for consumers. This endeavour is in sync with ITC Infotech’s vision of setting up ‘Innoruption Labs’, the concept of ‘innoruption’ being to combine the innovation and disruption. “At the Innoruption Labs, we work on Horizon 2 and Horizon 3 technologies. New technologies that are not yet fully mainstream will be leveraged to solve real-life problems,” said Mahesh Prabhu, VP and Global Head of Innovation, ITC Infotech.

This will include cognitive computing, image analysis, chat bots, augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR), among others. The Innoruption Labs has already made a move in this direction using many of these technologies. For instance, the Labs team has worked closely with a piping company to create a predictive model to identify the source and extent of leakage in water pipes. “A proof of concept has been used by an airline company to guide passengers through a crowded airport. That’s because the aircraft incurred huge costs due to delayed take-off,” highlighted Prabhu.

Principles of AR/VR can be applied to remove the components of elevators. Newer technologies can be applied for creating cashless vending machines. Out-of-the box thinking will help in coupon redemption happen through sound technology. Mobile apps can be used in the retail industry, where the app will navigate shoppers towards the product.

At the Innoruption Labs, a 23-member R&D team has built prototypes to execute many such concepts, besides nurturing start ups that specialise in digital marketing campaigns, virtual gamification and non-intrusive advertising, among others. Already six startups have been nurtured over the last two years.

One expects a new leash of ideas at iTech 2017. “We have set the bar high this year as the Codeathon gives participants an opportunity to complete projects that revolve round discreet problems. Many of these projects can be converted into business services,” Ms Sushma Rajagopalan, MD & CEO, ITC Infotech explained, adding, “The floor is open for participants to build social chat application software and create mobile blogs. Even jigsaw puzzles can be oriented to educate students, besides being an entertaining session.”

In the Codeathon segment, 40 teams will be shortlisted from the entries received and will face-off in a race against time to create code components for complex business applications. Participants can present their ideas across challenge areas provided by ITC Infotech. The event is free and open to all students, professionals, developers and early-stage technology startups.

“iTech is where young technology disruptors and innovators from across India come together to celebrate all things ‘new’ in technology. Technocrats and business leaders from across our global client base will be joining us for these two days to understand how they can unlock the untapped opportunity within their organizations through the latest digital technologies,” explained Ms Rajagopalan.

iTech 2017 is envisioned to bring together some of the sharpest technology minds to compete, create and code, while interacting closely with the vibrant ecosystem of entrepreneurs and business leaders of the future.

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