App wins for tackling cell towers battery theft

October 17, 2019 5:12 pm0 comments
MTN tower

MTN tower

MTHULISI SIBANDA
JOHANNESBURG – A solution allowing individuals to report suspicious activity within the vicinity of cell towers has won an annual competition that encourages youth to develop innovations to address challenges facing South African townships.

The startup duo, #1632, developed the solution called CharOn, which has emerged the winners of the 2019 edition of TADHackJHB held at MTN’s head office in Johannesburg.

With CharOn, if the app collects enough data of the same case being reported, authorities will be notified.

In April, MTN stated 733 batteries were stolen from their sites across the country. Each battery costs an estimated R28 000.

The theme for the 2019 global TADHack was: “Localised and Contextualised – Battle of the Bots”. #1632 pocketed the prize of $1000 (approximately R15 000) for their winning solution.

Phinda Ncala, MTN’s Executive: Information Technology, said hackathons such as the TADHack served as an invaluable incubation hub where innovative and scalable solutions that address some of the socio-economic challenges are created.

The executive said by supporting initiatives such as TADHack, MTN was contributing positively to the growth and development of the app development industry, and was positioning youth to play a meaningful role in the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

“At MTN, we are proud to provide young people with the platform to showcase their creative talent and to leverage the power of technology to develop home-grown solutions,” Ncala said.

This year’s edition attracted 200 participants making TADHackJHB the largest location globally with a high number of participants who submitted 47 projects vying for the top prize.

A panel of judges with industry experience evaluated submissions.

TADHack runs simultaneously in more than 30 locations and encourages young creative minds to build solutions to problems using telecoms and other Application Programming Interfaces (API).

– CAJ News

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