Startup bags $100,000 ‘Design in India’ prize

A city-based start-up has bagged $100,000 after it won the Qualcomm Design in India Challenge (QDIC) hosted by Government of India and Qualcomm to select three best start ups in India in hardware. The prize was given to them by Union minister of IT and Law Ravi Shankar Prasad.

The company, Carnot Technologies, led by Rohan Vadgaonkar, won the prize on January 17. The first edition of the challenge was announced back in 2015, with entries from around 400 participants, of which 10 were shortlisted.The three tech start-ups that won QDIC and a funding of $100,000 each are Carnot Technologies, iFuture Robotics and Uncanny Vision.

Rohan makes Carnot, a device that connects a car or a bike to the users’ phone and monitors the safety of their vehicles. The users get an alert if their vehicle is being towed or stolen. The device also provides automated instant alerts to emergency contacts in case of an accident.
Other features include mileage measure and vehicle analytics. Bikers get some added advantage with the ability to share road trip details on social media and indication of crowd sourced points of interests, like good places for tea, among others.

“The name of the competition was Design in India. It was based on the government’s Make in India concept. Unless it is designed in India, it cannot be made in India. We started working on it a year ago. Out of 400 applicants in the country, they shortlisted 10 and then three,” shared Rohan, a product of IIT, Powai.”The other two winners are from Bengaluru and we are the only team from Maharashtra,” said Rohan after coming back to the city.


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