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Emirates, Google join hands to launch Celebrating Arabic Reading

HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum.

Emirates Airline and Google are ‘Celebrating Arabic Reading’ all through this month, in a collaboration to reach millions of smartphone users in the region, and support the United Arab Emirates’ Year of Reading, a national initiative spearheaded by HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum.

The aim of the UAE’s Year of Reading is to nurture an entire generation of lifelong readers and ensure the groundwork is in place to support the country’s knowledge economy goals.

The mission of the ‘Celebrating Arabic Reading’ initiative is to make Arabic books more accessible for first-time online book readers and book lovers alike with unprecedented discounts of up to 90 per cent off on online books at the Google Play Books store, the world’s largest ebookstore that hosts more than five million titles and offers readers smart technology.

Discounts are valid across nine countries in the Google Play Store (both in IOS and Android) for the UAE, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Bahrain, Oman, Kuwait, Lebanon, Jordan and Egypt. This is the first of such online book initiative, and the first discount of this scale in the region at the Google Play store.

For a four-week period, Google will run its highest ever discount on the Play Books store on more than 4,000 popular fiction, non-fiction and children’s titles in an effort to reach millions of smartphone users in the Middle East and other continents.

His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman and Chief Executive, Emirates Airline and Group commented on Emirates’ partnership with Google, “Books can stimulate, inform, touch minds and hearts, and open up a world of possibilities for readers. As founding sponsors of the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature, we are staunch supporters of the written word.

“Our ‘Celebrating Arabic Reading’ initiative with Google aims to encourage more people to read, and try out Arabic e-books. Smartphones and tablets are increasingly a part of our daily lives, so it makes perfect sense to promote reading on these new platforms as well. People are hungry for content, especially Arabic digital content, and there isn’t a smarter investment for the future of this region than providing access to e-books to broaden the horizons of millions.”