Facebook has launched a Bots for Messenger Developer Challenge for developers across the Middle East and Africa. The challenge will see developers from the region create innovative bots with winners walking away with a number of prizes.
This challenge, according to Facebook, aligns with the company’s commitment to promote innovation in the Middle East and Africa. It will do this by providing developers and startups with the necessary tools they need to build, grow, monetize and measure products and services.
Facebook grew out of a hacker culture and says it thrives by promoting innovation on new platforms. The Bots for Messenger Challenge will recognize and reward developers who are able to create the most innovative new bots on Messenger.
To participate, developers must be in teams of up to three people and create bots in three categories: gaming and entertainment; productivity and utility; and social good.
The 60 finalist teams (10 per category in each region) will win a Gear VR and mobile phone, one hour of Facebook mentorship and tools and services from FbStart, a Facebook program designed to help early stage mobile start-ups build and grow their bots.
All student teams who make it to the finals will also win an additional $2,000. Students will, however, be verified against their registration via their government accredited school email accounts.
Three Runner-up teams for each region (one from each category) will be awarded $10,000 and three months of Facebook mentorship. For each region, three winning teams (one from each category) will also win $20,000 and three months of Facebook mentorship.
The submission phase opens from 15th February to 28th April. Winners will be announced on 19th June. Applications details are available here.