Smart recognizes most transforming devices in 10th SWEEP Awards
(The Philippine Star) - March 6, 2014 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - An innovative device developed by students from Bataan State University (BPS) bagged the grand prize in the recent 10th SWEEP (Smart Wireless Engineering Education Program) Innovation and Excellence Awards.

CoinSaver (The New and Innovative Way to Save) is a kiosk-like device that allows the user to save for a certain product or service. Using a mobile phone and a peso coin, one can actually start saving with CoinSaver.

By regularly dropping coins over a period of time specified by the product vendor or service provider, the user has a chance to save for the entire cost that he or she can then claim by presenting an SMS voucher that the machine will automatically send out once the user has saved the amount in full.

CoinSaver bested over a hundred entries from SWEEP partner-schools across the country. With this year’s theme, ‘Transforming Lives through Technology,’ competing teams have submitted entries from a wide range of fields such as health, education, livelihood, the environment, disaster preparedness, media, power and energy, transportation, agriculture and communications.

“This is a fine example of the innovations that our students from SWEEP partner-schools have developed using mobile and wireless technologies to help improve people’s lives. Over the years, the annual SWEEP Awards had managed to close the loop that connects education, innovation and entrepreneurship. Today, the winners of the SWEEP Awards have a very real option, if they wish to do so, to build real businesses using their innovation projects,” said Ramon Isberto, head of Smart Public Affairs.

“While not everyone will make that choice to take the plunge and pursue the path of entrepreneurship, the participation of the students in the SWEEP Awards has made them more attractive to potential employers,” added Isberto

Mark Anthony Colentava, team leader and presentor of CoinSaver, said it was the AlkanSSSya campaign of the Social Security System encouraging its members to save a few coins a day to complete their monthly contribution that inspired the team to create a kiosk-like device linked to a mobile phone that will allow the user to save for any product or service that they need, a few pesos at a time.

As grand champion, the team received a cash prize of P500,000 and an equivalent amount as grant to their school. For the first time in SWEEP history, Smart is sending the faculty mentor and two students from the winning team for a week-long educational trip to Silicon Valley in California. Smart intends the group to be exposed to the start-up scene and inspire them to become technology entrepreneurs.

Two teams from Batangas State University (BatSU) — Smart Eco Reward and Aquarius — emerged as 1st and 2nd runners-up, respectively.

Smart Eco Reward is an eco-friendly and reverse vendo machine that accepts empty plastic bottles and cans and automatically segregates them. The machine will ask the user to key in his mobile number for which he will get a free SMS as ‘reward’.

Team presentor Glenn Caringal says they developed a reverse vendo in the sense that instead of putting money to purchase goods, it accepts trash and gives a free SMS in return. They thought that coming up with such a device will help put their advocacy for a cleaner environment a step farther.

For BatSU’s second team, developing a wearable, waterproof device for seafaring passengers was the goal behind the Aquarius: Smart Beacon Bracelet. The device, which is automatically triggered when submerged in water or manually activated, can be used to track passengers if an accident happens at sea using the GSM and GPS capabilities of the bracelet.

Team presentor Leandro Miñon said the series of maritime accidents that saw many passengers unaccounted for inspired the group to come up with a GPS device to help save lives.

As long-time partner of the SWEEP Awards, Ericsson Philippines cited SMART ALAS (Alternative Learning Access System) from Wesleyan University-Philippines for its Ericsson Networked Society Award, a multi-language, multi-dialect, interactive and readily accessible application for the alternative education of interested learners even in remote areas.

Now on its 10th year, the SWEEP Awards is the biggest and longest-running competition that recognizes the most innovative devices and wireless applications that make use of Smart’s wireless technologies. It is a key initiative under SWEEP, the first-of-its-kind partnership between the telco industry and the academe that hopes to help enhance the quality of engineering and IT education in the country.

For more information on SWEEP and the winners, visit


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