Science & Environment

Software firm wins engineering award

Lily Bacon, Andy Harter, the Princess Royal
Image caption Lily Bacon and Andy Harter were presented with the prize by the Princess Royal

A British firm that developed technology that allows drivers to access smartphone apps via their dashboards has won a prestigious engineering prize.

The MacRobert Award for engineering innovation was presented to RealVNC by the Princess Royal.

The technology also enables IT workers to solve problems on other computers without leaving their desks and allows MRI scanners to be repaired remotely.

The award comes with a £50,000 prize.

The small Cambridge software company, which was set up by some of the inventors of remote computer access software, has collaborated with global technology giants such as Google, Apple, Intel and Sony and its technology is now said to be used in more than a billion devices worldwide.

Engineer Ian Shott, who was on the judging panel, said: "The sophistication of engineering behind RealVNC's technology has given them a game-changing proposition.

"The company is now on the cusp of fully exploiting this, and I fully believe they could be a billion dollar business within the next five years."

The MacRobert gold medal was presented on Wednesday at the Royal Academy of Engineering's awards dinner.