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over 10 years ago

How to make a great submission video

Aside from your app, your submission video is one of the most important things you’ll include in your submission! In fact, it’s sometimes one of the only things that judges review.

Although they are encouraged to, judges are not required to test each and every app. Therefore, it’s extremely important to demonstrate your app’s functionality in your video. That means carefully walking through your app’s features and showing how each one works.

You’ve already built an awesome app that helps consumers optimize their fuel usage, now show it off with a great video!

Tips on making a great video

  • Use an emulator or create a screencast. Snazzy marketing videos are great for promotional purposes, but they don’t help judges understand and evaluate your app. We strongly recommend creating a screencast or using an emulator so the judges understand exactly how to use your app. Remember — they are not required to test each and every app, so it’s to your advantage to include a step-by-step demo in your video!

  • What’s your elevator pitch? Be sure to explain why your app is awesome in the first few seconds of your video. You can get into the details of how it works immediately after, but treat the opening seconds of your video as you would a movie trailer or TV ad: pique your audience’s interest.

  • Keep it simple. Videos should be no longer than five minutes. You won’t be disqualified if yours is, but judges will likely stop watching after the five minute mark.

  • Don’t wait until the last minute to upload your video. Keep in mind that the time it takes to upload/process a video on YouTube or Vimeo varies greatly depending on the format of your original video, file size, upload traffic and Internet connection speed. As such, uploading your video could take anywhere from a few minutes to several hours or more. Don’t procrastinate!  

  • Edit. The great thing about screencasting is that you can show viewers only the best parts. Edit out the messy stuff, if you can, and don’t be afraid to do multiple takes!

  • Get organized. Write out a script of what you’ll say/show in your video, rehearse it before recording and keep in mind all of the above!

Don’t know much about recording videos? Check out these helpful screencasting tips.


As always, we’re here to help. If you have any questions about video requirements or the challenge in general, post on the Discussion Forum or shoot us an email at with “Ford” in the subject line.

If you have questions about the OpenXC Platform or need help with a specific application you’re developing, post in the OpenXC Google Group.

Happy filming!