Pivot25, now called Pivot East, is back. This time they promise to be more open and lenient with their gate charges and say that you won’t see more friends of iHub managers win the competition than the deserving Kenyans locked out. The categories are also to match the applications entered in them unlike before where utility category had games and productivity apps had social media apps.

My write-up on the competition touched raw nerves until a fatwa was issued against me resulting in the 9th February assault at the iHub. I was and still is just being honest. Problem is majority love it when you massage their egos than when you tell them the honest truth. But also after my criticism, the organisers are now hiding more and more information with even few sponsors openly mentioned while in actual sense, they might be very many.

Below are some of the apps which have been short-listed for the second version of the annual challenge.

Financial Services category Business and Resource Management Category Entertainment Category
Chamapro AFRILANCE Andromaid
Changamka Art Pakacha AngryKenyans
Future Magnets Dairy Sacco App KenyanEnt
Kwachu Tiko Easy Order Ma3racer
mCollector Get-it! app Mag Preview
MobiKash MyBusiness App Magaziine
M-Tafiti SMS Based Health Insurance Members Verification Run For Afrika
Pay4Us SMS Offline and Online virtual Market place Tough Jungle
QuickElec Wakili TUBET
Mobile Society Category Utilities Category
eLimu 6ix degrees
FarmPal Crowdpesa
Gorecycler Mafuta Go
GreenhousePro Mare-Mare
mpoultry Migwa
MPrep mTracker
Mtu wa Job m-verified
SARURA Smart Drive 360
StorySpaces Tell-a-Friend

The event will be a 2-day event (5 – 6th June) bringing the whole of East Africa together. The above 50 apps will battle it for the main category prize of $10,000 and $2,000 for each of the top 25 apps which will be further short-listed.

Gate charges, I am very afraid, are still very exploitative at around Ksh 7,300 though the organisers are promising to subsidise tickets for students. I say “exploitative” because Samsung is a great sponsor of the challenge and even this year (around January 9th) they announced that they will still be the main sponsors.

In 2011, some corporates boycotted sponsoring the event when they realised that they would not get good return since the gate charges locked out most of the Kenyan tech addicts.

Great that even this year’s Pivot East event has attracted entrants from Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda and Kenya. More than two hundred entries were submitted in the above five categories. Submission deadline for the applications was 31st of March 2012 followed by the selection process began.

The organisers say that the judging process was based on “inventiveness, innovativeness, enterprise ability and scalability of each App.”

All the best to the entrants