The very first edition of Megathon, conducted by the E-Cells of IIIT-Hyderabad and IIT-Hyderabad at IIIT Hyderabad, was the largest student run hackathon in Hyderabad, with 80+ teams, 450+ participants and 1000+ aspirants from over 85 colleges across Hyderabad attending the event.
Participants were given 24 hours to work on an idea in teams, at the end of which they had to present their prototype and business model to the jury.
Megathon kicked off on 17th September with speakers Nitin Padmavar (Martjack), Suresh Challa (TiE Hyderabad) and Ramesh Loganathan (Progress Software) addressing the audience about startups, entrepreneurship and product development, using their own careers as examples. There were over 15 mentors who were industry experts available throughout the event to help the teams with proceeding with their prototypes.
Participants began building their ideas into products- or “hacking”- as they call it. The momentum did not diminish in the slightest, with teams working hard on their ideas throughout the night.
After a round of screening, 22 teams out of 55 teams with their prototypes qualified for the final pitch. Students came up with a number of innovative ideas- from a pregnancy monitoring belt to a fishtank system that can save your fishes. Teams were given 3 minutes to demo their ideas followed by a round of questions from the jury members.
The winner of Megathon was “Persistence”, a service that processes content viewed by a user in videos in order to quickly access it again, which got great responses from the jury and a huge cash prize. Amongst several prizes, the top 3 teams were given free incubation and mentorship from IIIT-H Foundation, free credits from Digital Ocean, Amazon Shopping credits, a free dotTech domain, and a professional invision license . Team Persistence and Learn++ also got cash prize and 50K funding (each) in the EdTech domain.
Megathon was a great opportunity for students to be a part of the hacker culture and interact and receive guidance from the best minds from the industry. “Megathon was launched to create a platform for the student entrepreneurs to connect and take the first step towards their ideas. The response was overwhelming”, said Dhriti Goyal, E-Cell Head, IIITH. “We saw some really cool prototypes and it was amazing to see the efforts put in by all the teams and their spirit”, said Vibhas Goyal, E-Cell Head, IITH.
The event was managed especially well for the large number of participants present at the event, with a great venue, food, and interactive sessions to keep the energy high throughout Megathon.