SALT LAKE CITY — RapidSOS, a company based in New York City, was named the winner of the 21st Century Communities Challenge during the recent Winter Innovation Summit at the Salt Palace Convention Center. Utah technology firm Blyncsy took second place.
The Utah Science Technology and Research initiative partnered with Salt Lake County Mayor Ben McAdams and the Sorenson Impact Center to host the nationwide competition for market-ready, early-stage technologies developed for “Smart Cities.”
Participants submitted nominations in November, the finalists gathered in Salt Lake City in January to share their innovations with government officials, impact investors and attendees of the summit and the Sundance Film Festival.
RapidSOS won $5,000 for its integrated 911 emergency call smartphone application. The technology allows for immediate and automatic transfer of location data and other telemetry on 911 calls, enabling dispatchers to quickly locate and send help in emergency situations, increasing the chance of successful rescue.
Blyncsy, a mobility tracking company and recent USTAR Technology Acceleration Program grant recipient, received a $2,500 for its cutting-edge technology that gathers movement tracking data anonymously, allowing for the improvement of traffic flows within a city.
Other finalists included Rapport.io, a sustainability platform for small- to medium- size cities, and InsightFormation, a strategic planning platform that aims to improve healthcare and other citywide issues.
Finalists pitched their products to a panel of mayors, including McAdams, Mayor Bryan Barnett of Rochester Hills, Michigan; Mayor Stephanie Miner of Syracuse, New York; former Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake of Baltimore; and Mayor Eileen Weir of Independence, Missouri.