About Qualcomm Design in India - Challenge 2020:

What is Qualcomm Design in India - Challenge 2021?

The Qualcomm Design in India Challenge –2021 is a continuation of the initiative by Qualcomm that was started in 2016 to encourage design houses and product companies to invent useful and innovative hardware product designs preferably incorporating Qualcomm chipset platforms and technologies. It has been inspired by the tremendous potential of Smart Devices and products that can be built in the domains of 5G Applications, Smart Infrastructure, Medical Technology, Robotics, Industrial automation, and Rural IoT.

Why is Qualcomm organizing the Design Challenge?

At Qualcomm, we believe that there’s a huge legion of hardware design companies who can enable innovative products on Qualcomm SoC platforms. Successful and innovative product ideas will have access to Qualcomm Innovation Lab, an Incubation Lab where designing, prototyping and testing can take place under one roof, complete with its own dedicated technical resources.

Is Qualcomm Design in India – Challenge 2021 aligned with Make in India?

With Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision to transform India into a digitally empowered society, Qualcomm is glad to offer support to India’s ecosystem through The Qualcomm Design in India Challenge 2021. In its fifth edition, with this design challenge, Qualcomm continues to spur the domestic hardware ecosystem which will positively impact the product ecosystem of design and enhance the manufacturing facilities in India.

How can I join Qualcomm Design in India – Challenge 2021?

QDIC 2021 is only open to start-ups registered in India. It is not open to individuals. You need to register online to enter the challenge.

Where is the competition taking place?

The competition begins on Mar 18, 2021 and is open only to companies registered in India only.

Entering the Challenge:

What do I need to do to register?

It’s very simple. Visit registration page and follow the instructions there.

Is there any registration fee?

No. Participation in Qualcomm Design in India - Challenge 2021 is free.

Is this a team participation or individual participation?

Qualcomm Design in India - Challenge 2021 is open to companies and entrepreneurs who meet the Eligibility criteria as defined for the program.

Does everyone in the team need to register?

No. A designated representative of the company can register on behalf of the team.

How big should my team be?

There is no restriction on team size if you meet the eligibility criteria and have a great product proposal or idea.

Can I submit more than one entry?

Only one entry per company will be accepted for consideration. Submitting multiple proposals may lead to disqualification of the entrant.

What are the formalities to be completed as part of the registration process?

None, other than filling out the necessary information in the registration form on Startup India Portal.

After registering, do we need to send a draft plan to the organizers?

Submit as many details as you can during registration itself. If something needs to be conveyed after submitting the proposal, you can send email us at [email protected].

How many phases are there in Qualcomm Design in India - Challenge 2021?

Qualcomm Design in India – Challenge 2021 is a single cycle incubation from Mar 2021 – Mar 2022.

  • Application Phase (Mar 18 – Apr 26, 2021):Online submission of Product/Design ideas
  • Shortlist (May-Jun 2021): Up to 12 companies will be selected through a jury selection process in Bangalore and will be awarded with an initial prize money of INR 1,60,000 each.
  • Hardware Incubation (Jul 2021 – Feb 2022): Incubation of shortlisted companies at the Qualcomm Innovation Lab. In Sep 2021, a mid-cycle review will be held. Start-ups completing the review process will be given an additional prize amount of INR 1,60,000.
  • Finale (Mar 2022): Top three start-ups with the most promising products will be selected by a panel of jury members and receive INR 65,00,000 (winner), INR 50,00,000 (first runner-up) and INR 35,00,000 (second runner-up), respectively.

Once the selected team enters final phase, can we change a member of the team?

Yes. It is the company that is ultimately responsible for their product development and prototyping and is free to manage their resources in any manner they please.

Will I have the ownership rights to what I will create?

Yes. The company has full ownership rights to its ideas. All intellectual property arising out of this Qualcomm Design in India Challenge - 2021 is the sole ownership of the company that is submitting the idea and eventually designing towards it. Please see the QDIC Terms and Conditions for more details.


Who can participate?

Participation in the Competition is free, voluntary and limited to those who have a great product idea that uses one of the Qualcomm platforms. Please see Platforms in QDIC Terms and Conditions for more details.

What are the eligibility criteria?

  • Individual startup companies that demonstrate Hardware and Embedded design experience.
  • HW design proposals must be focused on one of the domains – 5G Applications and NavIC use cases, Smart Infrastructure, Medical Technology and Rural and Industrial IoT - regardless of the form factor of the product.
  • HW designs must be based on one of four available platforms. Please see QDIC Terms and Conditions for platform details.
  • Registered companies from India only will be considered for further evaluation in accordance with the quality of work submitted. Students do not qualify for this challenge.
  • Only one submission per company will be accepted. Multiple proposals from the same company could lead to disqualification.
  • Participating companies should have preferably established operations of minimum 6 months in hardware design and solutions.
  • The quality of each product design in the focus areas mentioned above with clear HW/SW differentiation will be valued along with creativity and relevance to "community and technology" related demand in India.

What are the deadlines for the challenge?

The registrations for QDIC 2021 will close on 11.59 pm on April 19, 2021, IST.

Is it possible to modify my project after the deadline?

On a case by case basis, only additional details can be submitted beyond the deadline. However, the submission cannot be modified. Participants need to send an email to [email protected].

Will I get technical support to complete my project?

Yes. Qualcomm will answer/clarify questions from participants in a timely manner. Additionally, the shortlisted companies will be provided lab facilities and dedicated engineering support to help complete their project.

My details are incorrect. How can I get them updated?

You can send any updates or changes to your entry by sending an email to [email protected].

Will the participants have to bear the cost of travel for the national competition?

In the previous years, Qualcomm provided air tickets and hotel stay to the shortlisted companies to attend the grand finale event. However, this is subject to change. The grand finale will be held in India itself.


What are the selection parameters?

Qualcomm will consider every proposal based on its merits and a variety of factors such as innovativeness, utility value, market relevance, design compatibility with Qualcomm chipsets/platforms, robustness of product design, time to market advantage and business potential including ability to commercialize and scale after the competition.

What is the evaluation time schedule?

Entries will be evaluated during the registration period in the first phase. These companies will be invited to come to Bangalore for a jury pitch. Jury scores will decide the shortlisted start-ups. Upto 12 shortlisted companies will be announced in Jun 2021.

Who will be on the jury? What are the jury members’ competencies?

The Jury panel will comprise of members from Qualcomm and the Industry. These are seasoned professionals who come with several years of industry and business experience.

How and when will I know if my proposal is selected?

Shortlisted participants will be informed of their selection by Qualcomm and will be published on the website.


Is there a cash prize?

Yes. 12 shortlisted companies will get a cash prize of up to INR 3,20,000 each to convert their design submissions into workable prototypes using the Qualcomm® Innovation Lab. These shortlisted companies will get 8 months of technical support and mentoring in the Qualcomm® Innovation Lab at the end of which, they will be judged at the grand finale event. 1 winner and 2 runner ups will stand to win INR 65,00,000, INR 50,00,000 and INR 35,00,000 in prize money, respectively.

Will I get a certificate?

Yes. Qualcomm will present the shortlisted and winning companies a Certificate of Recognition for their achievements.

Why should I participate? / What are the benefits of participating?

Qualcomm encourages everyone and anyone with a great product idea to step forward and participate, in line with the focused domains of 5G Applications and NavIC use cases, Medical Technology, Rural and Industrial IoT, and Smart Infrastructure. Not only does one have a good chance of being shortlisted and getting rewarded, 1 winner and 2 runner ups will win a cash award of INR 65,00,000, INR 50,00,000 and INR 35,00,000, respectively. In addition, all participants will have an equal opportunity to securing accelerator and/or venture funding during the evaluation process. Even if your startup doesn’t make the QDIC 2021 cohort, Qualcomm can recommend three startups to NASSCOM’s CoE-IoT who will be given a combined total of 30 seat-months without having to go through any further evaluation.


What if I have more questions?

In case of any queries, please do contact us at [email protected] with your questions.

Where can I find the template?

There is no specific template to submit your idea. Your idea may be submitted as a pdf file. You could also share a link of your video proposal or demo.

Where can I download the program kit?

All the information related to the program is available on our website. Lest you need further clarification, you can write to us at [email protected]

I’m unable to upload my entry. I get an error every time. Please help.

We are always ready to help if such a situation occurs. Please email us at [email protected] indicating the issue and we will help you figure out a way to submit your idea.


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