Bangalore: A virtual classroom solution for cloud computing that enables the conduct of live, HD quality, two-way audio/video interactive classes at as low as 200 Kbps speeds and a location-based mobile service that cuts out clutter and spam have been named the top winners of the Microsoft BizSpark India Startup Challenge.
Their developers will get $30,000 each to enable them take the projects forward.
Explained Piyush Aggarwal of Aurus Network which developed the virtual classroom: "Many educational and training institutes today are looking to getting into the distance/online education space and offer their classes live to remotely located students and centres."
"Current solutions like VSAT-based or conventional hardware based video conferencing suffer from problems like high cost of ownership, lack of scalability to large numbers of concurrent locations and teaching sessions, dependence on infrastructure (internet leased lines) which does not exist widely in emerging countries. Our solution overcomes all this.
NowFloats, the location-based mobile service, enables consumer-to-business, business-to-consumer and consumer-to-consumer communication within a location in real time.
"Consumers today are cluttered and spammed with information and have a challenge in obtaining contextual information in the location there are. Businesses (certainly the brick & mortar ones), on the other hand, have a challenge in reaching out to consumers within their vicinity, in real-time and economically. NowFloats provides a platform where this problem has an exciting, unique solution," its developer, NowFloats Technologies, said.
The second prize winners in the two categories - cloud and mobile - received $15,000 while four runners-up in the cloud and three runners up in the mobile categories received $1,000 each.
"The Microsoft BizSpark India Startup Challenge 2012 is the largest entrepreneurial competition in India that recognizes inspiring ideas in the field of technology," the company said in a statement.
"The Challenge offered an opportunity for start-ups to win huge grants to realize their business plan. Sixteen finalists were shortlisted on the basis of ingenuity, creativity and innovation of the submitted plans.
"But most importantly, the challenge presents an opportunity... to build and deepen connections, share ideas, network partners and celebrate the individual successes of member start-ups," the statement said.