Disney and McLaren sponsor wearable tech competition


Loughborough University, Network Rail and glh Hotels also sponsor IC tomorrow wearables contest with £210,000 prize

Innovate UK will host a wearable technology contest through its IC Tomorrow programme that could see tech startups win part of a £210,000 prize fund and the chance to work alongside companies including Disney and McLaren.

With the wearables market set to reach $5.7 billion by 2018 according to research from Transparency Market Research, Innovate UK (formerly Technology Strategy Board) has invited startups to bring to market innovative technology such as fitness trackers with the chance to win up to £35,000.

The competition is split across six categories, with each category sponsored by a high-profile business who will trial the winning technology.

Disney is sponsoring the “Wearables for kids” category, while McLaren Applied Technologies and Loughborough University are overseeing sensor technology and tracking performance.

A category focused on guest experiences through wearables is sponsored by glH Hotels, with Network Rail and Amey working together on a local environment category.

Accessibility, such as devices for the disable, is being sponsored by Atos, with Queen May University London sponsoring a plug-and-play wearables category.

IC tomorrow programme manager Matt Sansam said: “Wearables will be making an increasingly big impact across UK industries in the coming year. We are looking for ambitious concepts that explore wearable technologies in new ways.

“The early movers identified in this contest will benefit from partnerships with established industry players, who will help bring their ideas to market.”