Telekom Challenge Rules

By applying to or participating in the Telekom Challenge Program, you agree to the following rules (“Rules”). These Rules are solely between Deutsche Telekom AG (“DTAG”,“we”, “us”, or “our”) and you or, as the case may be, the entity that you represent (“you” or “your team”), including the lead researcher(s)/Expert(s) who applies to the Telekom Challenge Program (the “Principal Investigator”) and any members of the research/development team. The Principal Investigator is responsible for distributing these rules to all members of the research team (in case you apply as a team) before they participate in any research in connection with a proposal funded by the Telekom Challenge Program.

Deutsche Telekom AG (“DTAG”), organizes the Telekom Challenge to open innovation doors and invite you to jointly build a better future through advanced connected life and work. The Telekom Challenge is one step for gradually making this vision a reality. The Telekom Challenge is a worldwide invitation for individual experts and researchers (individual persons & teams) from Academia, R&D Institutes, and Industry to provide innovative solutions for specific challenge fields. The Telekom Challenge offers multiple opportunities to the participants depending on the status of the submitted and selected ideas. In the first submission phase, participants from all over the world are invited to submit a short outline of their innovative technology and research idea to be evaluated by a panel of experts. Based on the evaluation within the first phase, 10 participants for each stream will be invited to the next stage to develop their ideas. The top 3 of each stream will receive a prize money and be invited to the Award Ceremony (hybrid event) in Berlin.

It is important to note that it is not university chairs, entire R&D units or companies from industry who apply, but rather individual people or teams from all over the world who are employed at universities, R&D institutions or industry apply independently and therefore are eligible for the challenge. Furthermore, employees from DTAG and affiliated companies in the Group and governmental organizations are not allowed to apply to or participate in the Telekom Challenge Program. By submitting your proposal to the Telekom Challenge Program, you represent that your Principal Investigator:
(a) does not participate in his role as an employee of a government entity (other than an accredited academic or research institution);
(b) has not been a director, officer, employee, intern or contractor of DTAG or its affiliates within the 12 months preceding application to the Telekom Challenge Program (“Ineligible Personnel”); (c) is not a member of the immediate family or household of Ineligible Personnel. Participants must at least fullfill following criteria in the related stream to attend the challenge:

  • Research Stream: Life beyond the status quo – deliver a research/white paper
    on the following focus: “What will be next to Wi-Fi and beyond to ensure Data distribution in home networks?”
  • Development Stream: Deliver measurable improvement in the form of a technical Proof of Concept with following focus: “How can we secure Data distribution in home networks?”

Submitters must be at least 18 years of age. The relevant submission deadline for both streams (first phase) closes on April 11th, 2021 at 23:59 CEST. The relevant submission deadline for final results of TOP 10 of each stream closes on August 2nd, 2021 at 24:00 CEST.

Winning proposals selected for funding will receive an Award that include cash. Award funding is not extendable or transferable without our written consent.
The winning proposals (TOP 3) from Development and Research Stream receive prize money in the following amount:

  • Development Stream:
    – 1. Prize: 150,000 €
    – 2. Prize: 100,000 €
    – 3. Prize: 50,000 €
    – Additional Award: Most creative solution (prize money not included)
    – Participation grant (during solution development phase): 25,000 € for each of selected TOP 10
  • Research Stream:
    – 1. Prize: 75,000 €
    – 2. Prize: 50,000 €
    – 3. Prize: 25,000 €
    – Participation grant (during research paper development phase): 2,000 € for each of selected TOP 10

Furthermore, the winners (TOP 3) from each stream will be invited to a Award Ceremony (hybrid event) in Berlin and get the opportunity to meet with high-level executives and decision-makers of Deutsche Telekom and explore various cooperation opportunities with one of the world’s largest telecommunication companies. The Principal Investigators are responsible for any costs and expenses associated with an Award, including overhead and indirect costs. You will be required to complete administrative requirements to process any cash Award, which may include completing a tax questionnaire. If you are unable to complete these requirements in a timely manner, DTAG reserves the right to rescind the Award. Except where prohibited by law, you are responsible for all taxes (including income tax and value-added tax) that may be imposed on you by your local tax authorities. Furthermore, if participants selected for TOP 10 fail to submit a final solution in their dedicated stream, DTAG reserves the right to rescind the payed participation grant.

Application Content
No proposal to the Telekom Challenge Program may contain any confidential information and no part may be marked as ‘confidential. DTAG does not accept any legal obligation (whether of confidentiality, compensation, return or otherwise) with respect to any proposals. DTAG reserves the right to implement competitive, similar, or identical ideas in the future, without restriction or obligation. You understand and acknowledge that DTAG has wide access to technology, designs, and other materials, and may work on and/or develop projects and ideas that may be competitive with, similar to, or identical to your proposal in theme, idea, format or other respects. You acknowledge and agree that you will not be entitled to any compensation as a result of DTAG’s use of any such similar or identical material that has or may come to DTAG from other sources.
You represent and warrant that
(a) your proposal is either your original work or an update to your original work;
(b) you are not aware of any third-party patent rights which are affected by your proposal other than those indicated in the application form submitted to DTAG before the submission deadline mentioned above; and
(c) your proposal does not infringe, to your knowledge, misappropriate or otherwise violate any other third-party intellectual property rights, patent rights, including any copyrights, trade secrets, trademarks, and know-how.

Right of Use
You retain the full rights to the submitted ideas and solutions, including the right to file applications for registered intellectual property rights (in particular patents, utility models, and trademarks). In case DTAG is interested in a submitted protectable idea or solution, you will grant DTAG a license on fair market conditions. In case DTAG is interested in filing or acquiring an application for a registered intellectual property rights (in particular a patent, utility model, or trademark) regarding a submitted idea or solution, or wishes to acquire an already existing intellectual property right, DTAG will make a corresponding offer to you. Even if DTAG has no intellectual property rights to the submitted ideas and solutions, Deutsche Telekom reserves the right to further develop the submitted ideas and solutions. This reservation shall neither affect the initial idea and solution, nor your intellectual property rights.

You acknowledge and agree that we may collect, store, share, and otherwise use personally identifiable information provided during the Telekom Challenge Program application process, including but not limited to, name, mailing address, phone number, and e-mail address. All personally identifiable information collected is subject to, and will be used in accordance with, the DTAG Privacy Notice, including for administering Telekom Challenge Program and verifying applicant’s identities, addresses, and telephone numbers in the event a proposal is selected for funding. Personal data shall be deleted six months after the award ceremony in Berlin.

Marketing & Publicity
Except where prohibited, you consent to our use of your name, likeness, biographical information, and voice in advertising, publicity, trade, and other marketing and promotional materials (including video, audio, and print through all means of distribution) worldwide without compensation, notice or approval, and you disclaim any ownership rights to the content of such materials.

Representations and Warranties
You represent and warrant that:
(a) your receipt of any Award is neither prohibited nor inconsistent with any applicable laws, regulations, or binding orders, including applicable ethics rules or internal institutional rules;
(b) you have completed or will complete all legal and ethical requirements necessary to accept the Award;
(c) your receipt of the Award will not create a conflict of interest for DTAG or its affiliates;
(d) you are not participating in, nor have any decision-making authority over, any procurements or purchasing decisions involving DTAG or its affiliates on behalf of your organization; and
(e) you will properly book and record the Award in your accounting documents in accordance with applicable laws and regulations.
In the event that your representations and warranties under this section are or become inaccurate, you must notify us immediately and any Award you receive will be voidable.
DTAG also reserves the right to limit or abandon the challenge if in its opinion the challenge´s aims can either not be achieved or can only be achieved inadequately (in particular because of the low number of participants or the low quality of submissions).

Customer Agreement / Limitation of Liability
By submitting your idea via the online tool, you accept the conditions stated in these official rules, agree to be bound by the decisions of Deutsche Telekom AG, and warrant that you are eligible to participate in the Telekom Challenge Program. Each research team member and the Principal Investigator hereby releases DTAG from, and waives any and all claims against DTAG for, any losses, liability, and damages of any kind, (including for any loss of data, lost profits, cost of cover or other special, incidental, consequential, indirect, punitive, exemplary or reliance damage) incurred or sustained in connection with or rising out of (1) the Telekom Challenge Program or any travel or activity related thereto, (2) use of any proposal or rights therein, or (3) any breach of any agreement or warranty associated with the Telekom Challenge Program, including these official rules, however caused and regardless of theory of liability. DTAG and its partners reserve the right to amend any of these rules at our sole discretion by posting the revised terms on the Telekom Challenge Program website. Your continued participation in the Telekom Challenge Program after the effective date of the revised rules constitutes your acceptance of the amended rules. These Telekom Challenge Rules are governed by the laws of Germany, except the conflict of laws rules. Any disagreement or dispute which may arise in connection with these Telekom Challenge Rules which cannot be settled amicably will be brought before the courts of Berlin, Germany.

The Telekom Challenge is organized by Deutsche Telekom AG. The Program lead is Elmar Arunov:
Elmar Arunov
Deutsche Telekom AG
Telekom Innovation Laboratories
Ernst-Reuter-Platz 7
D–10587 Berlin

Implementation Partner:
Schaltzeit GmbH
John-Schehr-Straße 34
D–10407 Berlin

Further information about the Telekom challenge can be gained by email inquiry via