It seems like Google is looking forward to establish even a bigger market in the Middle East as it announced few hours back that it is about to take a month-long initiative that basically aims to promote Arabic on the Internet. Although Arabic is one of the top 10 spoken languages in the world, it has been seen that internet seems to be an English oriented platform, offering limited resources to the natives of those countries that do not support a well framed English, primarily because of the political aspects, or probably because of poverty and bad economy. As it has always been noticed, Google seems to keep an eagle’s eye on the regions where it has less popularity and Middle East, for sure was one of them. We Will Discuss Google’s latest Strategy in later part of the post, but before that, it is important to learn some key factors that forced Google to make such an announcement.
Arabic as a Language
Just like its History, Arabic as a language, is way symbolic, yet interesting, According to the latest statistics, it was found that there are about 246 Million of Arabic speakers who mainly belong to Middle East, covering Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Iraq, Lebanon, Egypt, Syria, Jordan, Bahrain, etc. Arabic is a Language that is given a high account among the Muslims all over the world. This is majorly because of the Fact that the Last Prophet, Hazrat Muhammad (p.b.u.h) was an Arab and not only this but the Last Holy Book of Muslims, Quran was also prescribed in this Language, on the followers. Although with time and development, The Holy Book and the Teachings of Islam were translated into native languages in the other Muslim Countries like Urdu, Hindi, Persian, English, learning to recite Arabic is still an obligatory principle for the Muslims Throughout the world.
In short Arabic is the sixth largest spoken language of the world and hence it holds a huge audience.
Google to Highlight Arabic! Why?
The point is self-explanatory here. Google is, at present, the leading search Engine in the online world, offering several other services along with its major ideology. Google is a mutual platform for every next person, belonging to any race, country, religion, age, undoubtedly. However, in my last visit to Middle East, what was quite noticeable was the fact that no matter how much wealth the “sheikhs” of Arab has, they seem to be quite far when it comes to the global language that is English. Even on Bahrain airport, the computers were all in Arabic that pretty much showed their lack of interest in English. Google, on the other hand, is an English devoted platform; despite of the languages it offers, its working is best in English only. Therefore in order to bring a massive audience to it, Google has announced its “Arabic Web Days”.
Google to Promote Arabic!
Not too soon, but not to late either, Google announced few hours back that despite of having a huge literature, Arabic only contributes to 3% in the total digital content, where there are only 5% of the Arabs who contribute in online global population. Maha Abu Elenein, Head of Communications in Middle East and North Africa, claimed that Google want the internet to be a relevant place for Arabic Speaking Users.
Google Announced its Arabic dedicated Month on its blog in the following words:
“For the next 30 days, we’re holding a series of online and offline events along with our partners Vinelab, Wamda, Yamli and Taghreedat, as well as Twitter, Wikipedia, TED, Soundcloud, and regional organizations Al Arabiya, TwoFour54 and Qatar Foundation’s Qatari Computing Research Institute. “
Along with various partners, Google is organizing a series of online and offline events, including Google Hangouts with “industry experts,” an infographic competition and the celebration of “Arabic Web Day” on December 12.
Although being too recent, the news has taken open arms by the Arabs, especially the talented youngsters on the Middle Eastern Countries. While I was researching for the feedbacks on different Arabic Forums on social networking sites, It was seen that people are delighted with the news. To them it is an opportunity to interact with world outside and promote their magnificent art and literature on a huge platform, as big as Google!
Lets see what policies Google introduces after this Arabic Web days, dedicated Month.