Russian Social Network VKontakte Offers 5m Rubles to iPhone App Creators

If you can put together an iPhone application that enables VKontakte users to view their profiles, exchange messages, watch videos and do all the other things that VKontakters do, the company is ready to reward you with 5m rubles.  It’s part of a contest they are launching to have contributors build their official iPhone app and expand their services into the iOS arena.

According to the Russian Gazeta, VKontakte is open about the features they want to see in user submissions:

“We want to create a ‘messenger’ app, a light version on a program that can exchange messages, photos and videos… You could say it will work like Skype, but without the possibility to make phone calls,” said Vkontakte press secretary Vladislav Tsypukhin.

VKontakte already has an iPhone applicatoin which allows users to check their feed, send messages, chat, listen to music and view pictures, so it’s not entirely clear why they want another one.  The ratings on the current app is 4+ stars, which is high.  Tsypukhin’s words above hint at the fact that they may be trying to create something specifically for direct video-to-video chat between VKontakte users, which would be something over and above what’s currently offered on the site.

This would make sense for Russian users, because it’s a cultural touchstone and is used for everything from dating to communication during the riots to piracy.  We’ll see how the contest goes and keep you updated.