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China wins inaugural Asean Makerthon 2017, Malaysia bags third spot

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CYBERJAYA: The Hi Team from China's Harbin Institute of Technology bagged the first prize of US$1,000 (RM4,300) at the inaugural Asean Makerthon 2017, hosted by the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) this evening.

The Chinese trio bowled over the judges with their smart invention – the Good Box, which is thermo-sensitive and designed to protect fresh fruits and vegetables, being delivered in iced box by e-commerce players.

"Online shopping is big in China. So my team and I have created a prototype that can sense the temperature inside an iced box used to deliver fresh fruits or vegetables to online shoppers. We can adjust the temperature inside the iced box," enthused Chen Yu Hong.

Chen and her teammates, Zhao Chen and Xing Rui, were only given two days to put together their innovation in the Internet of Things (IoT) challenge.

With the win, now it seems like their next challenge will be easier. How best to spend the prize money.

"I don't know. We need to discuss what to do with the money," said Chen.

The second prize went to the UIT-ES Team from Myanmar. They walked away with US$800.

As for Malaysian team, AgentC, they won third place with their smart agriculture prototype. The boys walked away with US$500.

"We didn't expect to win at all, this has been a good experience for us," said the home-grown talents.

There were other original awards given out as well with the South Korean team declared as the coolest team, while the team from the Philippines were crowned the ones with the messiest work station.

According to the MCMC director of digital lifestyle and society, John Tay, the Asean Makerthon 2017 is a regional initiative aimed at establishing strong IoT networks among Asean members, in line with the objectives of the Asean ICT Masterplan 2020.

The programme serves as a platform for Asean makers to showcase their skills and creativity in producing prototypes.

For the maiden competition, the theme centred on smart cities, healthcare and agriculture – with 20 teams from Asean and its dialogue partners, China and South Korea putting their best foot forward.

"I was shocked by the ideas that they have. Some of the prototypes have big potential to be commercialised.

"I hope we can make the Makerthon as an annual event," said Tay.

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