ITA opens Sas centre for mobile development

Centre will offer training and support to build Oman's mobile development capabilities

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ITA opens Sas centre for mobile development The official opening ceremony for the Sas mobile application development centre also honoured the developers who completed the course during the soft launch phase.
By  Mark Sutton Published  June 5, 2016

The Information Technology Authority (ITA) of Oman has launched its new Sas Centre for Mobile Applications Development at KOM4 at the knowledge Oasis Muscat.

The centre, which is part of the ITA's ‘Sas' technology foundation program, was opened under the patronage of His Excellency Dr. Ahmed Bin Mohammed Al-Futaisi, Minister of Transport and Communications and the chairman of the board of directors of ITA.

The development centre is intended to provide a hub for creating commercially sustainable mobile applications, and to create the skills, education and ecosystem to create a local development industry.

The center targets students, jobseekers, freelancers, Start-ups / Entrepreneurs and Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).

HE Dr Ahmed Bin Mohammad Alfutaisi, Minister of Transport and Communications said: "Mobile phones are now widely used in all our daily lives, therefore we hope this centre will serve as a talent hub and incubator in the field of mobile apps development in the Sultanate that attracts Omani mobile apps developers and enthusiasts, to provide them with proper training, consultancy and equip them with the necessary skills and knowledge to produce commercially viable mobile apps."

"Through showcasing the apps developed by the first patch graduated from the centre, we saw how our Omani talents utilized their skills, creativity and knowledge to create innovative mobile apps solutions," he added.

As a soft launch, the centre trained 54 mobile app developers since its establishment in December 2015. A number of mobile apps developed during the soft launch were showcased and honoured during the celebration, including Oman Schools app developed on Android by Ashraf Said Salim Al-Harbi which provides services such as information about schools in Oman, location to schools using Google Maps and automatic search for the nearest school.

Other apps which were showcased included the Muscat Map app, developed on iOS by Hamed Nasser Hamed Al-Manhi which helps users to search for information on landmarks in Muscat, and the Bunyan app for Android, developed by Hana Ahmed Mohammed Al-Kharousi, which allows users to search for rented homes in Oman.

This centre is another new arm of the Sas Centers which are designed to provide the foundation for the development of IT skills and talents, and entrepreneurial spirit, to create a vibrant ICT sector in OMan . The Sas Centre for Mobile Apps Development provides various services including training, technical and project management consultancy as well as devices support.

The training programs offered by the centre includes a 3-month mobile app development course for college graduates, job seekers, employees and entrepreneurs on the fundamentals of app development; on-the-job training for selected students who complete the technical course, including mentorship and hands-on training, for six months; fast-track training for college graduates and professionals to meet the growing requirements of the market; and on-demand training which will cover specific areas and topics in mobile development.

The Sas Programme is a national ICT business development initiative and a state-of-the-art business designed to help promote small and medium enterprises (SMEs) build a robust ICT sector in Oman. Implemented by the Information Technology Authority (ITA), it is a key element of ITA's strategy, developed jointly with United Kingdom Business Incubation (UKBI) and Coventry University, to develop ICT business incubation in Oman.

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