Minnesota Tech Company Wins $50K Minnesota Cup Prize for Mac-to-iOS Graphic Tablet App

A Minneapolis, Minnesota company has won the $50,000 grand prize for developing software that allows iPad users to connect to computers to use the mobile device as a drawing and graphics arts tablet. This allows them to utilize the tablet they already have without having to purchase a more expensive specialty tablet, such as the popular industry standard Wacom devices currently available in the market and used by many designers and digital artists.

According to reports, the firm beat out six other competing companies for the cash prize. The yearly contest is aimed at companies with less than $1 million in revenues. The company is called Astro-HQ and the software they developed is called Astropad. The software also works with iPhones. Users can install apps from the company that are used with both the Mac OS and synced up to their iOS device of choice. The software is also said to work with Apple's latest devices and technology including the Apple Pencil stylus (along with a variety of other stylus pens), the iPad Pro and the new iPhone 6S and 6S Plus.

A connection between devices is made via USB or WiFi. This technology will likely be an in demand innovation for digital artists already in the graphic design and creative fields or those studying or newly entering the field.

According to another report, former Apple engineers that make up the company are involved in the design of the new product. Their names are Mat Ronge and Giovanni Donelli. As the high tech division winner, they also received an additional $30,000. The 11th annual event was held at the University of Minnesota in the Twin Cities.