Google, Microsoft to channel millions of dollars to innovators

Tech giants Google and Microsoft have announced they will channel funds totaling $36 million (approx KSh3.1 billion) to developers with innovations aimed at bettering the society.


The largest chunk of the money is from Google – the $23 million (approx KSh1.97 billion) it has set aside for seven organizations that are ‘changing the world.’

According to the Google’s director of giving Jacqueline Fuller, the funds will benefit developers who are in the nonprofit sector.

“Technology has dramatically improved our lives, from the speed at which we get things done to how we connect with others. Yet innovations in medicine, business and communications have far outpaced tech-enabled advances in the non-profit sector,” she said in a blogpost.

Microsoft also announced it will be dishing out $13 million (approx Kshs.1.1 billion) to students with promising projects for ‘social good.’

Speaking in a social innovation summit where the company announced winners of the funds, Microsoft’s corporate vice president of strategic and emerging business development Dan’l Lewin said that it hoped the applications would enable the developers to create sustainable business ventures.

The Imagine Cup grant honors software and “cloud” computing services. The winner of $100,000 (approx. Kshs.8.6 million) was a team from Germany that created an application that helps drivers know the best route to their destination thereby reducing carbon emissions and traffic congestion.

Other grant winners on the same category were teams from Australia and Ukraine who developed apps to help detect pneumonia and convert sign language to words respectively.

Under the global impact award, $5 million (approx Kshs.428.5 million) was awarded to install water flow sensors in several regions in Africa while $3 million will be given to DNA barcode endangered species and help fight the illegal wildlife trade. $5 million was also awarded through the World Wildlife Fund awards for technology to battle poaching.

Posted in: Startups

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