East End girls have their app designs commissioned

A GROUP of teenagers who were the first in the country to design their own phone app are having their inventions commissioned.

The girls, who were chosen for a unique project at Central Foundation Girls’ School in Bow, had to go before a panel of ‘Dragons’ Den’ judges and pitch their ideas.

Technology charity CDI Europe is now spending �5,000 on developing each of the winning designs.

The first app, ‘Buzzer Buddiez’, is an alarm clock with a twist.

When the user hits the snooze button, a message is automatically sent to a buddy who can then send them another alarm prompt.

One of the app’s designers, Amarah Khan, 13, said: “We wanted to make an app for an everyday problem that many people suffer from.”

The other design, ‘Transit’, converts Bengali to English and vice versa.

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It is aimed at Bangladeshi parents who want more involvement in their child’s education but find communicating difficult.

Mohima Ahmed, 15, who worked on the app, said: “We know more about what could help people in our communities than a bunch of middle-aged men in an office.”

The charity started in Brazil and aims to empower people from disadvantaged backgrounds through technology and learning.

Around 20 girls at the school, in Harley Grove, gave up two evenings a week for five months to work on the project, called Apps for Good.

Janet Chapman, assistant head teacher at the school, said: “It’s absolutely brilliant for the girls. The dragons didn’t give them an easy time. They were asking them quite searching questions.”

The dragons made their decisions on how marketable and original the apps were.

As part of the scheme, the students, who were all aged from 13 to 16, each got a Dell Streak smart phone.

Another course is being held at the school in March and some of the original group will mentor the new recruits.