The final applications are in. The iQ judges will be sifting through over 50 applications to find the top 16 innovations. Those winners will then be asked to give presentations on their ideas, and eight of them will be invited to iQ’s summer incubator. The top three get prizes of $15,000, $10,000, and $5,000.
In the past few workshops, iQ focused on understanding innovation and commercial potential of products. Innovation can be defined as an invention plus its distribution. The invention itself needs to bring something to the market that is different than what is already out there. As Professor Rich Dino would say, how is it cheaper, better, or faster? Distribution refers to the way that the product gets to the customer. Some products are sold through retail stores, some through online sales, and others are sold directly to specific customers. For an innovation to be successful it needs to capitalize on both those aspects.
The commercial potential of a product is the ability for that product to thrive in a market. More specifically, it takes into account the potential applications of the product, the market size, the competition for other products out there, and more. To get a true understanding of the commercial potential of a product, hours of primary and secondary research needs to be done. This is one of those time consuming but necessary steps to get a product or idea to fruition.
We also had previous iQ winners come in and share about their companies. Macroscopic Solutions is a business that sells Macropods. Macropods allow people to take pictures of macro and microscopic objects and zoom in to see all the detail in it. For example, a Macropod could take a picture of a fly, and you could see the veins in a fly wing at perfect quality.
Another company that came to present was Haptitude. They focus on technology that enables people to feel and touch things through computers. This technology has a variety of uses in many different fields.
Good luck to all the applicants who submitted their ideas! We will be back to announce who has moved on to the next round.
Steven Graf ’15
Senior, UConn School of Business
Steven Graf is a UConn senior majoring in healthcare management. He is the former president of the UConn chapter of Global Brigades, a student-led organization that provides medical, public health, clean water, and environmental relief trips to countries such as Ghana, Panama, Nicaragua and Honduras. With the goal of saving lives, Graf has recently embarked on an entrepreneurial venture to help patients receive the correct doses of their medications. View Posts