The region’s first AppJamming Summit

Published: March 15, 2019
Beirut, February 24, 2019: touch, the leading mobile telecommunications and data operator in Lebanon, managed by Zain Group, partnered with Geek Express to host the AppJamming Summit (AJS) semi-final competition on February 24th 2019 held at Antwork, Hamra. The competition was attended by 40 participants joined by touch team as part of the jury, including Digital and Innovation Senior Specialist Lara Ammar, the Geek team, including Founder & CEO Manal Hakim, COO Rayan Najdi, the Antwork team including COO Rania Banna & the Communication Lead Ghassan Jawhar, renowned tech enthusiasts and educators, and the participants’ parents.
AJS (Beirut) was the first App Development competition in the MENA region that has witnessed some of the most impressive talent among its young participants, whose ages range from 8 to 16 years old. The common thread between all the apps presented at the semi-finals was the topic of “culture”: How an application can bring people from different backgrounds and experiences together in celebration of their divergent cultures.
The competition started with groups gathered at Antwork to set up their projects and add the final touches to their projects. The teams consisted of 1-3 participants each where they submitted their final pitch of their app idea, design, and the codes which make up the customized application. Presentations covered both technical and conceptual aspects of their applications in front of a jury, which consisted of touch Digital and Innovation Senior Specialist Lara Ammar, Geek’s Academy Manager Mia Loutfi, and Geek’s Team Lead Ali Yassine and CryptoPhi Founder & CEO Al El-Zohbi. All teams were judged by the quality of their codes, relevance and interface of their application, and the teams’ presentation skills. 
Nadim Khater, Chief Commercial Officer at touch said, “Living in the digital age, we know that coding is essential and a core skill for today’s youth that have much talent, creativity, skills, and digital appetite to disrupt and generate new business models. The AJS competition is a great opportunity to not only showcase ideas, but a chance to learn, get inspired, empowered, and prepare them for their future careers.”
Manal Hakim, CEO & Founder of Geek Express said, “At Geek Express, our aim is to empower and enable young minds. We believe the best way to do it is by teaching them how to code. We want to see them engaged as creators of technology rather than passive users. A child should be able to design his own app, not only use it. Awareness on the urgency and importance of coding, technology in general, and STEM learning is our priority. For this purpose, a lineup of STEM related hackathons, competitions, and edu-tech activities will take place at Geek Express both locally and regionally throughout the year.” 
The winner(s) received an all-expenses-covered trip to Hong Kong, where they will present their application at the finale for the chance to win a sponsored trip to MIT, Boston. Some of the app ideas included a multiple-choice quiz, related to fun facts and information about different cultures, and a language translator facilitating communication between people from different countries and cultures.
About AJS
The App Jamming Summit is an international competition for young app developers across the globe to showcase their talent and creativity with simple computer programs. AppJamming Summit (AJS) was created with the vision to encourage more young people to become Creators with Technology. Started in 2014, the event has built a community of young coders equipped with programming and presentation skills. The participants use an MIT based platform. Geek Express is the City Ambassador in Beirut and Doha.
About Geek Express
Geek Express is a complete online & offline platform that offers workshops and training for kids and teens in Coding, Engineering and Digital Design. Our mission is to bridge the gap between traditional curriculums taught at schools and the ever-increasing demand for STEAM skills related jobs. We aim to enable and empower young minds with the tools needed to be actively engaged in technology and have them ready for a future that relies heavily on Tech literacy. 
About touch 
touch is the leading mobile operator in Lebanon, managed by Zain Group, the pioneering mobile and data services operator in the Middle East and Africa. In the last thirteen years of operations under Zain’s management, touch has had many success stories, providing cutting-edge services and technology to its consumers.
Drawing from Zain’s regional expertise providing telecommunication and mobile data services to 50 million users, touch has devised and adopted a consumer-centric strategy. touch’s range of services and its 3.9G and 4.5G coverage of all Lebanese territories has allowed it to gain a 54% wireless telecommunication market share in Lebanon. touch employs specialized and competent Lebanese personnel that aims to provide the latest in telecommunication services and products to the local community to help it grow in a more sustainable way.
touch, with the backing of Zain and its cooperation with the Lebanese Ministry of Telecommunications, dedicates all its resources to keeping up with the latest in telecom and mobile data. It offers a 24/7 call center service to cater to the need of its customers for uninterrupted connection. 
touch values the local community, perceiving it as a major partner; its mission and vision reflect a dedication to humanitarian, social, and cultural causes, as well as creativity and innovation, which it considers integral to advancing its social responsibility program.
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About antwork 
antwork grows beyond just providing on-demand work spaces, and into facilitating work experiences, nurturing engaged communities, and empowering individuals in seeking their next big break. Through meticulously designing flexible spaces that cater to a diverse workforce with various needs, antwork has been enabling engaged communities nation-wide. antwork aims on connecting co-workers either through their events & programs that act as a platform for knowledge exchange and network building, the antwork app, or simply through creating smart collaborative spaces that are accessible to the entire ecosystem. “antwork is an enabler, a platform connecting spaces, connecting people, and making things happen.”

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