Smart launches Eco Reward project

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Tuesday, April 22, 2014


DOING something good for the environment is a noble act. Getting rewarded for going green is even better.

This was the idea behind Smart Eco Reward, a reverse vendo machine that not only
accepts and segregates soft drink plastic bottles and cans but also rewards the user with free SMS or short messaging system.

The device was developed by a team of students from Batangas State University. It finished first runner-up at the 10th Sweep Innovation and Excellence Awards, the annual search for the most disruptive innovations that address consumer pain points conducted by Smart Communications Inc. under the auspices of Smart Wireless Engineering Education Program (Sweep).

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“It is a reverse vendo machine in the sense that instead of putting money to purchase products like in traditional vendos, this one accepts trash and gives a free SMS in return,” team presentor Glenn Caringal said. He is also the researcher and marketing strategist of the project.

He and his teammates Kent Jerome Umali, Jamille Jen Cuevas and Mara Charmaine Magpantay comprised the first of two teams from Batangas State University that made it to the top 3 of the competition, the other being Aquarius: Smart Beacon Bracelet, which won second runner-up.

The team is composed of fourth year electronics students. Umali, the team leader, was responsible for programming the device, making all of its components work as one.

Cuevas took charge of the layout and prototype design, while Magpantay chose the materials that will be used for the prototype.

The series of disasters that hit the country in the past year reminded the team members that they need to do something to help protect the environment and somehow help mitigate climate change, and what better place to start than school where they can make the most impact.

With the help of the faculty mentor, Engr. Janice Peralta, the team came up with an idea to put a reverse vendo machine in school to help push the environmental advocacy on waste segregation.

The team won P200,000 in cash and the equivalent amount as grant for the school.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on April 23, 2014.

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