MTN App of the Year

Can I submit an idea or does my idea needs to be complete?

All submissions need to be complete to the point where the judges need to be able to use it and see its full capabilities. It doesn’t necessarily have to be published on any App Store but it needs to be a complete solution.

How are submissions judged?

There are 2 judging rounds. Round 1 – the judging panel sits with the apps loaded on devices, “play around” with them and score on the following criteria.


  • Is the app a complete solution or does is it far from completion?
  • Is it polished and does it work in a way the user would expect?
  • Does it do what it is meant to do, and resolve the needs of the challenges it addresses?
  • Is there a market need for the application?
  • Does it have traction?


  • Is it a new application or service that has been created?
  • How creative is the approach?
  • Is it contributing towards the improvement of society or business in some new way?
  • Is it commercially, socially, politically, or personally appealing, relevant and exciting?
  • Is it freshly entertaining, a new approach to an old problem or a better way to do something more effectively?


  • Is the app easy to use?
  • Is there a clarity, simplicity and intuitive feel of how the app works and what to do next?


  • What is the potential of the application and the team of developers behind it?
  • Can the app be taken to the next level?
  • Is there a potential path to revenue with the app?


  • How much impact does the application have?
  • What kind of problem does it solve – a big or small one?
  • What is the level of indispensability and importance of the app?


  • How well did the team communicate their idea/app?
  • Were they effective in telling their story and did they convey the importance and relevance of the mobile application to society?


  • Can the app “think” for itself, forecast, and predict the user’s likely future behaviour by analyzing patterns in data inputs?

Entries are shortlisted from judging round 1 and finalists move on to judging round 2. Then 3 finalists are selected per category and the winner is announced at the main event.

How do we know if we have progressed to the next round?

After each round of judging, there are call-arounds and emails sent to shortlisted entrants.

How many phases are there and what is the competition format and breakdown?

There are 2 judging phases and 1 Awards evening.

How do we submit details and screenshots of our app?

You can upload screenshots and images on the submissions page of the website.

What if the app is not published to any site - can we still submit this app?

Yes, only if we can have remote access to the app for judging days. We will need all login details in order to use the app.

What is MTN Business App Academy?

The App Academy was born out of an awareness that there are many insightful people who have ideas for app-based solutions to everyday challenges, but who are not developers, and do not know how or where to connect with the right people.

App development classes are hosted on, with the 2023 programme scheduled to start on the 27th of June 2023. In order to facilitate participation, the website remains zero-rated for all MTN subscribers.

Participants learn to code in order to solve a problem unique to South Africa or the African continent at large and take part in a virtual hackathon. The 2023 App Academy is once again SETA accredited and awards students with an NQF level 5 certificate which assists them in job seeking.

How do I participate to the MTN Business App Academy?

Register on App Academy page

Do I need to qualify to enter the MTN Business App Academy?

The MTN Business App Academy is a year-long programme aimed at beginner, intermediate and advanced app developers. They mainly consist of tech graduates, garage developers and first-time tech innovators from around the continent. Applicants will be asked to do a proficiency test, which will sort them into their respective groups.


All individuals who are interested in app development are welcome to participate in the MTN Business App Academy.

What is the Best Campus Cup category?

Students can participate as individuals or teams and compete for a share of R100 000 as well as a Centre of Excellence for their institution. The institution will be celebrated as producing some of the top developers in the country across all marketing material.

What does the Best Campus Cup Solution category winner receive?

The R200 000 for ‘Best Campus Cup Solution’ award will be split as; R80,000 for the 1st place. 2nd place winner will receive R70,000 and R50,000 will go to the entrant in 3rd place.