Plantronics (NYSE:PLT) , PLT Labs and Clarity are launching the 2015 PLT Labs Application Innovation Contest, where contestants from 33 countries can compete for a total of $85,000 in cash prizes. The contest is designed to give innovators access to Plantronics APIs, SDKs, and product concept prototypes so that they can explore new applications and business models in one of three broad categories:
  • Business Applications for Mobile Devices
  • Applications for People with Limited Mobility
  • Personal Applications for Mobile Devices

Contestants will form teams and submit ideas against any three of the aforementioned application categories. A first prize of US$50,000, a second prize of US$25,000 and a third prize of US$10,000 will be awarded to the first, second, and third place winning submissions, respectively, as determined by the judges. Winners can use these cash prizes for any purpose including to continue their studies or to start a company.

Through the Plantronics Developer Connection, Plantronics will release APIs to contestants that provide access to the data from different sensors that could be contained inside a wearable device, as well as other telemetry and communications protocols. These sensors could include a nine-axis sensor that can track head orientation in three dimensions, tap detection, free-fall detection, speech sensing, multiple radios, an accelerometer, magnetometer, gyroscope, near-field communications, and several more. Qualified teams will receive access to physical product concepts so they can further develop their applications and test them. Finalists will have an opportunity to present their ideas live to a select Plantronics and Clarity judging panel.

“Headsets have rapidly moved beyond simple wearables that connect one person to another through speech. Now a broad range of contextual information from the device, coupled with the power and ubiquity of smart phones makes entirely new classes of applications possible,” said Cary Bran, vice-president, Innovation and New Ventures, Plantronics. “Through this nine month hack-a-thon we are hoping to tap the brightest and most creative innovators in the world to explore the realm of what’s possible—and reward them with cash so they can further their education or develop new businesses. ”

The 2015 PLT Labs Application Innovation Contest will consist of five rounds:

Initial EntryContest submissions are open from September 29, 2014 through November 15, 2014. From now until the close of submissions, contestants can review the Terms and Conditions of the contest, understand the nature of the contest, and learn about the capabilities and programming interfaces to the new devices. They can form teams and think about their applications and the business cases behind them. Submissions must be completed and received through the Contest Submission Process no later than November 15, 2014.

Quarter-FinalsThe Plantronics judging panel will review all valid entries submitted by the deadline date and select 20 teams who will proceed to the Semi-Finals round.

Semi-FinalsIn this round, Plantronics will loan the remaining teams a prototype device, to build and test their application. Teams will submit a proof of the supported functionality by submitting sample code and design of the application interface. The Plantronics judging panel will select the top 10 teams to proceed to the Finals round.

FinalsThe top 10 teams will submit a prototype of their application, a final business report and a short video. Each team will be assigned a Plantronics mentor. The Plantronics judging panel will then select the top 5 teams to proceed to the Winners Round.

Winners RoundIn May 2015, the finalists will send, at Plantronics’ expense, a delegate who will present the team’s prototype live in front of the judges, who will select the contest winners.

Contestants residing in the following countries are eligible to participate: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada (excluding Québec), Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Japan, Korea, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Mexico, New Zealand, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Romania, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, United Kingdom, and the United States. Some exclusions apply. Contestants are responsible for meeting any obligations to their education institution, employers, or any other applicable regulation or policy.

For more information or to apply to participate in the 2015 PLT Labs Application Innovation Contest, visit:

About PLT LabsPLT Labs is working on innovations that will help take wearable tech to the next level. Through PLT Labs, developers can sign-up for a chance to help shape the future of wearables and influence how people will interact with the Internet of Things. Sample applications can be found at Developers interested in joining the Plantronics developer community can find more information at

About PlantronicsPlantronics is a global leader in audio communications for businesses and consumers. We have pioneered new trends in audio technology, creating innovative products that allow people to simply communicate. From unified communication to Bluetooth® headsets to gaming solutions, we deliver uncompromising quality, an ideal experience, and extraordinary service. Plantronics is used by every company in the Fortune 100, as well as 911 dispatch, air traffic control and various mission-critical applications for those on the frontline. For more information, please visit or call (800) 544-4660.

About ClarityClarity, a division of Plantronics (NYSE:PLT), creates smart communication solutions that help seniors live richer, more engaged lives. For more than 40 years, Clarity's innovative products -- such as amplified telephones, notification systems and assistive listening devices -- have helped people with hearing loss, low vision, limited mobility, dexterity issues and other health challenges. Clarity has pioneered many firsts -- from digital sound processing in 2005 to remote-access customer service in 2010. Millions rely on Clarity to communicate at home, at work and throughout their lives. For more information, please visit or call 1-800-426-3738.

Clarity and Plantronics are trademarks of Plantronics, Inc. registered in the US and other countries, and PLT Labs is a trademark of Plantronics, Inc. The Bluetooth® word mark and logos are registered trademarks of Bluetooth SIG, Inc. and any use of such marks by Plantronics is under license. All other trademarks are property of their respective owners.

Copyright Business Wire 2010