Prototyping Lab

Creative Prototypes For Technological Challenges

Whether in a publishing house, a media company, or an agency, technologies can shape the future of media. We connect innovative companies with talented students from Hamburg universities, enabling them to collaboratively develop prototypes in the Prototyping Lab. The teams tackle real technological challenges faced by the companies, with support from renowned industry experts.

In previous labs, students experimented with XR technologies and artificial intelligence for the content industry. Together with our partner companies, they developed prototypes for various challenges, including: How can AI optimize printing decisions in a publishing house? How can existing content be adapted and utilized for VR applications? How can AI assist music editorial teams in selecting new songs?


Do you want to participate in the next Prototyping Lab as a student? We will let you know as soon as the application phase begins.

Wintersemester 2024


Cigdem Boom-Aker

Your Dream Team

An innovative prototype can only be created with a motivated team. That’s why, together with our partner universities, we select the most committed students who are keen to develop pioneering prototypes. Based on your previous knowledge and interests, we form interdisciplinary teams of coders, designers, project managers and business minds.

But it’s not just your previous expertise that counts when it comes to being selected: Your willingness to experiment and your team spirit are just as important to us.

  • Gain valuable practical experience in the development of technological prototypes
  • Work together in interdisciplinary teams of 4-5 students from different universities

  • Opportunity to be taken on as a working student or similar in the partner company afterwards

  • Creditable as academic achievement and monthly scholarship of up to €500 per person

  • Professional and methodical support from industry experts as mentors and nextMedia.Hamburg

From July you can apply to take part in the Prototyping Lab for the winter semester 2024/2025. Register now for our application reminder.

Prototyping Lab 2019



Become A Partner Company

We are looking for Hamburg-based content companies with exciting practical challenges that want to develop prototypes as innovative solutions together with students in just three months.

That’s what the Lab offers you:

  • Testbarer Prototyp
  • Wissenstransfer durch neue Perspektiven und agile Arbeitsweisen
  • Kontakt zu talentierten Studierenden
  • Employer Branding
  • Kostengünstiger Technologie-Check
  • Hohe Medien- und Event-Präsenz
  • Einbindung in eine innovationsstarke Community

Would you like to be a partner company in the next Lab? Get in touch with our program manager Cigdem by the end of April.



RMS Logo
RMS Challenge

Wie geht Conversion in der Welt von Online-Audio?

Das Radio hat sich im Rahmen der digitalen Transformation zu einem Multichannel-Medium entwickelt. Eine der zentralen Fragen in dieser digitalen Welt ist die der Werbewirkung. Wie messen wir die Conversion eines digitalen Audiospots? Wie weisen wir nach, dass ein Audiospot aus einem Hörenden eine interagierende Person macht?

Carlsen Logo
Carlsen Challenge

KI-basiertes Lettering von Comics

Um ausländische Comics zeit-, personal- und kostensparend ins Deutsche zu übersetzen, benötigt Carlsen eine KI, die:

  • die Sprechblasen präzise identifiziert
  • deren Größe und Form erkennt
  • den als Fließtext in Absätze untergliederten Übersetzungstext korrekt und optisch ansprechend einfügt
Jahreszeiten Verlag
Jahreszeiten Verlag Challenge

Content und Data: KI-Anwendung für Food-Trendthemen

Im Jahreszeiten Verlag sollen neue, digitale Produkte zukünftig datenbasiert entwickelt werden. Für den Bereich Food soll in einem ersten Step eine KI-Anwendung entwickelt werden, die neue Foodtrends identifiziert. Die Erkenntnisse aus der KI-Anwendung sollen dann in einem zweiten Step zu der Entwicklung eines neuen Produktes für den Bereich Food des Jahreszeiten Verlags führen.

Our roadmap 2024

Beginning of October 2024

Matching the Teams

You will find out whether you have been selected for the Prototyping Lab 2024 and which company challenge you will be working on.

Beginning of October 2024

October 15, 2024


Let’s get started: At the kick-off, you get to know the other participants and start developing the prototypes with an ideation session.


October 15, 2024

October 16, 2024 – January 15, 2025


As a team, you have three months to solve the practical challenge. We and our mentors will support you with methods, tools and feedback.

October 16, 2024 – January 15, 2025

January 16, 2025


At the public closing event, you will present your prototypes and learnings to Hamburg’s content and tech industry.

January 16, 2025


Prototyp von Team Carlsen

AI decision tool for book production

The Carlsen team set itself the goal of reducing storage, production and waste costs while ensuring delivery capability. To achieve this, they developed a prototype that predicts sales trends and calculates reprint decisions.

Projektteams und Mentoren des Prototyping Lab 2019

Music Prediction Machine

The team developed an AI to help the music editors at N-Joy select new songs that listeners are most likely to like. The AI uses 33 features to examine the music titles for similarities.

Team Spiegel Media

AI filter for identifying fake ads

Team SPIEGEL’s prototype is designed to identify fraudulent ads that conceal inferior products or malware, among other things. The team was able to achieve this using a support vector machine and a bot on Google Ad Manager.


Smartphone Application „Foodbot“

Foodboom has been looking for new multimedia applications that can be easily integrated into its own services and social platforms. The “Foodboot” prototype uses the camera function to recognize food and then makes suitable recipe suggestions.


As Partner Manager at nextMedia.Hamburg, Cigdem is the contact person for corporates and advises them on the various offers for companies (including SPACE, Prototyping Lab, City of Content Tour). In this context, she also supports the nextMedia.advisory board. As program manager, she is currently in charge of the Prototyping Lab. Trained in media management, she studied publishing at the HTWK Leipzig and book science at the University of Mainz. After holding positions at DIE ZEIT, Bookwire and Holtzbrinck ePublishing, she most recently worked as Manager Strategy & Innovation at the Börsenverein des Deutschen Buchhandels e. V. (German Publishers and Booksellers Association).

Cigdem Boom-Aker

Partner- and Programmanager
T +49 40 / 23 72 435 60

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