Facebook is challenging developers across the Middle East and Africa to create innovative bots in the Bots for Messenger Developer Challenge.
This aligns with Facebook’s commitment to promote innovation in the Middle East and Africa by providing developers and start-ups with the tools they need to build, grow, monetise and measure products and services.
Developers, in teams of up to three people, are invited to create bots in three categories: gaming and entertainment; productivity and utility; and social good.
The 60 finalist teams (10 per category in each region) will win a Gear VR and mobile phone, one hour of Facebook mentorship and tools and services from FbStart, a Facebook programme designed to help early stage mobile start-ups build and grow their bots.
All student teams that make it to the finals will win an additional $2 000 (students will be verified against their registration via their government accredited school email accounts).
For each region, three runner-up teams (one from each category) will win $10 000 and three months of Facebook mentorship.
For each region, three winning teams (one from each category) will win $20 000 and three months of Facebook mentorship.
Submissions are open now, with the deadline for entries being 28 April at 11:59:59 GMT.
Finalists will be announced on 19 May, and there will be a deadline for entries from finalists of 2 June.
Winners will be announced on 19 June.