The call for app developers: Huawei continues to accelerate digital innovation in Africa


In a continent of nearly 34 million unemployed people, software development provides a significant opportunity for empowerment. Africa has more than 700 000 developers, 31% of whom are self-taught. Even more significant, almost one in five developers are women. Now in its third year, the annual Huawei Global App Innovation Contest (Apps UP) provides an invaluable platform for our continent’s best app developers to showcase their talents while helping to accelerate digital innovation in the process.

To date, Apps UP has received nearly 10 000 submissions from different parts of the world. This year’s theme is ‘Together We Innovate’ and encourages developers to create apps that integrate Huawei Mobile Services capabilities and services which can enhance the experiences of over 650 000 Huawei end users in over 170 countries and regions. For African developers looking to create awareness for their innovative approaches to overcoming the day-to-day challenges people on the continent experience, Apps Up is the perfect showcase.

Kurt Mbanje, who received last year’s Best App Award for the Middle East and Africa region for his Coresthetics digital fitness coach app, says the HMS Core developer framework makes it easy to quickly deploy an app and not worry about otherwise mundane tasks like user authentication or device authorisation for video playback.

“Huawei has a large and continuously growing share of the world’s smartphone market. It only makes sense to leverage their capabilities by using HMS core,” says Mbanje.

For Velly Dingaan, the developer of the UniAPS which won in the Excellent Student Award category for the region, HMS Core is flexible and provides an array of open device and cloud capabilities which can be easily integrated into apps. It enables developers to deliver next-level user experiences and make premium content and services broadly accessible.

“Huawei kits are very easy to integrate into apps. The AppGallery is gaining momentum in the market, with so many opportunities for a developer’s app to be exposed to a large audience which will allow it to grow fast in terms of downloads. Apps UP provides a platform for developers to learn more about the latest technology and enhance their mobile app development skills,” says Dingaan.

As has been the case of previous competitions, Apps UP 2022 has more than $1 million in prizes up for grabs to encourage developers to create mobile apps that bring a seamless, digital, and innovative experience to end users. Of this, $200 000 will be allocated to the following award winners in the Middle East and Africa:

  • Best Application Award
  • Best Game Award
  • Most Social Impact Award
  • Best HMS Core Innovation Award
  • All-Scenario Coverage Award
  • Excellent Student Award
  • Starlight Creative Award, and
  • Honourable Mention Award.

African developers who are keen to put their creativity to work and be in the running for these awards and global recognition, need to register an account on the official Huawei Apps UP contest Web site. Applicants can sign up either as an individual or as a team of no more than four members, including a team leader. The deadline for final submissions, is 9 October 2022.

The judging panel will review the submitted works and select 30 apps from each region for the public review and finals stages. These shortlisted apps will be highlighted for global promotion, on both the contest’s official Web site and AppGallery by 20 November 2022. The public rating score for each work is based on the number of votes the app receives. Each region will hold its own final judging in December 2022. The judging panel will rank the 30 shortlisted works according to a comprehensive scoring formula in which the judging panel, public rating and HMS integration scores are added.

For more information on the rules and any other questions on Apps UP 2022, visit the official Web site. Don’t delay, enter your app today and stand a chance to win your share of $1,000,000.

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