Tech shorts: Programming competition, MSME initiatives, and more


Posted at Jul 19 2022 04:14 PM

MANILA -- Here are some of the latest news and updates from the tech world.

These are not endorsed by ABS-CBN News. 



Registrations have officially opened for Agoda's third global programming competition, Codegoda, which is slated to take place this August.

With a time limit of three hours, entrants will need to solve algorithmic challenges based off real world challenges presented at Agoda using programming languages of their choice, including C++, Python, Java, Swift, Javascript, and more.

The competition will be held on August 6 starting at 1:30 p.m. (Indochina Time) ICT. The timer will begin the moment a participant starts on a challenge. The competition window ends at 7:30 p.m. ICT on the same day.

Winners will be announced on August 13 via the Codegoda YouTube channel, Life at Agoda.

Participants stand to win over $10,000 worth of prizes across the competition. To support and encourage more women in tech, the top woman coder will also receive an additional cash prize of $500.

If a participant's skills are a match, they may land a job in Agoda's tech team. To date, close to 20 people have been hired and have grown their careers at the company.


Canva kicks off its 8th anniversary in the Philippines with Negosyantrends: MSME Summit 2022 happening from July 19 to August 6.

The summit is designed to inspire the entrepreneurial spirit of micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in the country.

It brings together design experts from Canva Philippines and industry leaders from the Department of Trade and Industry, TikTok Shop, Lazada, Rags2Riches, When In Manila, and Mommy Mundo to discuss topics and trends that will help MSMEs grow and scale their business.

The lineup includes sessions on branding, designing for e-commerce, social media advertising, leveling up your online sales strategy, and creating and scaling your business through video content, among others.

The last day of the summit on August 6 will be a face-to-face event featuring a panel discussion with Rags2Riches president and founding partner Reese Fernandez-Ruiz, Vyous Digital CEO and founder Nian Ellao, and Kohi Social CEO and founder Andrea Sumida.

Negosyantrends: MSME Summit 2022 is open to current and aspiring
entrepreneurs and freelancers. It is also streamed live on Canva Philippines' Facebook page.


Crunchyroll Premium is now available for Globe users as a result of the anime streaming service's partnership with the local telco.

Subscribers can sign up and enjoy different tiers of Crunchyroll Premium through the Globe One app, GCash, or through SMS.

These include Fan Access (CRFAN) or 1 month ad-free fan access, Mega Fan Access (CRMEGAFAN) or 1 month ad-free mega fan access with offline viewing and access to four concurrent streams, and Annual Fan Access (CR1YEAR) or 12 months ad-free mega fan access with offline viewing and access to four concurrent streams.

By purchasing vouchers starting at P399 via SMS, postpaid and prepaid subscribers can text CRFAN, CRMEGAFAN, or CR1YEAR to 8080 to avail the Crunchyroll Premium subscription of their choice.

Globe Prepaid subscribers can also register to any Go+ promos and choose GoANIME from the freebies to get up to 25GB of extra data to stream their favorite anime titles.


In celebration of its 10th year anniversary, Grab Philippines recently held GrabNEXT, an annual merchant conference offering learning and networking opportunities to brands and MSMEs on the platform.

Several key programs and features were unveiled during the event, such as Scan to Order, GrabMerchant Community, Mastercard Business Tool Kit, and GrabMerchant Masterclass.

GrabNEXT also showcased several thought leaders and industry experts such as culinary artist and TV host chef Jeremy Favia, Let’s Eat Pare founder Mark del Rosario, and media personality Christine Bersola-Babao. They shared various insights and best practices on encouraging culinary creativity, and the value of building a community in empowering small and local food businesses.


Indie game developer Yangyang Mobile has released its third game on the Nintendo Switch, Google Play Store, and Apple App Store platforms.

Perfect Gold: The Alchemy of Happiness is a coming-of-age visual novel about Marion and Audrey, two female mages who escape detention in order to attend a festival.

As they spend the day with each other, players uncover how Marion and Audrey's relationship fell apart. Players can also influence the characters' actions through dialogue options.

At around 30,000 words and with 2-4 hours of gameplay, Perfect Gold is ideal for those who like to relax with character-driven visual novels.

It is available in English, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, German, and Russian languages.



Melissa Henson, Manulife Philippines' chief marketing officer, was recently included in Campaign Asia's top 50 most influential and purposeful marketers in Asia-Pacific.

Henson is the only Filipino on the list, and one of only two from an insurance company.

She was recognized for leading the local arm of global financial services provider Manulife on its various integrated marketing initiatives for its customers and communities during a time of crisis.


Homegrown cryptocurrency exchange Philippine Digital Asset Exchange (PDAX) is now offering a total of 70 cryptocurrencies to clients who sign up for its exclusive Prime service.

Launched earlier this year, PDAX Prime is a new offering for sophisticated crypto investors who need assistance in their crypto journey.

The service touches on three essential investor needs such as direct access to crypto market, quick access to a dedicated team, and access to continuing crypto learning content.

Regular users of PDAX's web exchange and mobile app currently have access to 25 cryptocurrencies.


The Pokemon Company has released the finale of its "Pokemon Legends: Arceus" animated web series, which is based on the namesake Nintendo Switch game.

Titled "Two Hues," the episode is now available on YouTube. Players can receive a Shiny Baneful Fox Mask by choosing Get via Internet from the Mystery Gifts feature in the game.


Shopee hopes to upskill young Filipino talents and mold them to become tech leaders through its apprentice program.

Open to top university students, the Shopee Apprentice Program offers firsthand experience working on large-scale projects in the e-
commerce and digital finance industry.

Apprentices can also expect to receive guidance and mentorship from Shopee's top leaders as their internship journey progresses.

Upon completion of the program, successful apprentices have the option to join an accelerated track for the Global Leaders Program, Shopee's 2 year flagship graduate program for young professionals.

More details are available on Shopee's website.


SKY Fiber offers new deals on their Internet plans, promising to provide a balance on reliable fiber-fast speeds and monthly fees that won’t eat up a chunk of household budgets.

Its free speed boost promo offered on select plans until October 31 has been further improved without additional fees. The SKY Fiber 50Mbps Plan (P1,699 per month), for example, now allows subscribers to experience up to 85Mbps speed for free until the end of October.

Online applications are also possible with SKY Fiber via its website or KYLA, its 24/7 virtual assistant. Those that will apply online for a SKY Fiber 50Mbps Plan or higher until July 23 will be treated up to P400 Jollibee e-GCs.

SKY Fiber has also bundled one or two WiFi Mesh for free, depending on the chosen plan. A WiFi Mesh provides proper signal distribution around the house, eliminating the need for higher speeds that would incur more cost.

SKY Fiber Unli Broadband + HD Cable TV Plans are also available so that families can save and efficiently pay for both subscription plans. These plans also come with a SKY Evo digibox to access Google Play Store apps and content streaming services like HBO GO, Viu, and iWantTFC.



Select Filipino entrepreneurs vying for a chance to realize their business dreams came to a head last week at the Pinoy Dream Negosyo event in Makati City.

The event rounds off the series of online challenges and activities for Raket Mo 'To and Da Best of Food PH. Top three participating entrepreneurs from the Raket PH and FoodPH Viber channels were the opportunity to pitch their business ideas and receive a business grant from Viber and its partners.

In the end, two budding Filipino entrepreneurs became one step closer to fulfilling their entrepreneurial dreams as they each received a business grant from Viber and its partners. The judges chose Mon Cabsag of The Bistro Box as the GRAND BESTie of FOODPH, and Richmond Argosino of Ken Goods and Apparel for Raket Mo ‘To of RaketPH.

Pinoy Dream Negosyo is in line with Rakuten Viber's mission to educate, enable, and empower Filipino MSMEs by giving them a platform to share their entrepreneurial journey and by providing business owners with the know-how and tools to help implement their business plans, and scale their business operations.