Accept Nokia's App-Design Challenge, and Bag Yourself £20,000

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Want to develop apps for one of the largest ecosystems on the planet enjoying over 12 million downloads a day across more than 200 countries? Nokia has a competition running for app developers, rewarding those who'd love the challenge of designing gorgeous apps for their S40 full touch Asha ecosystem.

Your mission, should you (ahem) choose to accept it, is very simple: write a killer app for a Nokia Asha Full Touch smartphone. If you succeed, not only do you win everlasting glory and fame, but also free promotion for your app, and money. Lots and lots of money.



Competition categories and prizes

In case you're worried about the competition (after all, there's a hell of a lot of apps out there), there are four different categories you can enter -- Music & Entertainment, Games, Utilities and Productivity -- with €25,000 for first place, €15,000 for second place, and €10,000 for third place in each category. There are also ten big ones up for grabs for the Best User Experience, Best Web App or Best New Idea, regardless of category.

If, somehow, that wasn't enough cash floating around to tempt you, there are also plenty of prizes exclusive to UK entrants: £1,000 and a free phone for the best UK app (in any category), and every single entry puts you into a UK prize draw to win a bunch of stuff, including £500 in cold hard cash, a Lumia 720, promotion time for your app from Nokia, or smaller prizes, such as shopping vouchers.


App design

So, you're convinced to enter, but not sure what exactly you're designing for? The app has to be designed for an Asha Full Touch smartphone. There are six of those: the 305, 306, 308, 309, 310 and 311 (easy to remember, isn't it?) The apps should work on any of these models, but bear in mind judges will be wielding an Asha 309, so you'll want to double-check your pride and joy looks good on that particular device.

Above all, you'll want to focus on high-quality applications, as user interface and user experience will be prided above all, so it's not wise to just hack together a dodgy re-work of a festering old Android app. (Though well-worked ports of apps from other platforms will make eligible entries, of course.) Ideally, your app should also leverage Nokia Ad Exchange.

There's two ways of actually going about designing your app: there's Nokia Web Tools 2.3 for WebApps, or if you're a seasoned Java-wielding pro, you can use the Nokia SDK 2.0. Whichever path you choose, you won't be going it alone -- as always, there are webinars to help hone your skills, plus the App Developer Conference on the Nokia dev forum, and support for all your user interface and user experience queries; all on the Nokia Developer site. For more help, you can also check out the competition Facebook page, where you can pick up tips and shamelessly stalk the competition.


How to enter

Of course, going through the whole process of developing an app, from the creative layout to late-night coding binges, takes a while. In this case, you've got a couple of months to work the magic -- entries have to be published in the Nokia Store by June 30th in order to qualify.

More details, and the all-important registration page, can be found over on Nokia's site, or on the ever-helpful NokNok. So, all that's left to do is crack open an energy drink of your choice, pull up a keyboard, and get cracking. Fame, glory, and a suitcase full of cash await.

Enter the competition and register your details now