Google and Emirates Airline join forces to celebrate UAE's Year of Reading with up to 90% off on e-books on Google Play Store across the Middle East and Africa.
Over 200 million mobile users scattered across the Middle East and North Africa, most of whom have easy access to the internet, means the opportunities for human development are endless. And they’re about to get even bigger now that Google and Emirates Airlines are joining forces to launch the 'Celebrating Arabic Reading' campaign.
A joint statement by Google and Emirates Airlines was issued yesterday to announce their collaboration to give the region’s smartphone users access to Google Play Books’ extensive library – the world’s largest e-book store with over 5 million titles.
The initiative runs for four weeks and consists of massive and “unprecedented” discounts of up to 90 percent off on over 4,000 Google Play Books Arabic language titles available across UAE, KSA, Qatar, Bahrain, Oman, Kuwait, Lebanon, Jordan, and Egypt on the Google Play Store.
Over 50 bestselling Arabic language books have been curated by the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature and the Emirates Literature Foundation to be featured among the e-books on sale, such as Rua Falsafia Fel Hekam Wal Forousia and Tell You About My Tribe, as well as a collection of popular children's e-books like Creatures on the Ceiling, Altghrayib Al-Bilaliyah and I Love.
His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman and Chief Executive of 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.”
Ronan Harris, Vice President for Large Customer Sales for Google Europe Middle East and Africa, said: “Technology has always played a pivotal role in providing people with equal access to information, and empowering them with knowledge. That’s something we’re very passionate about at Google and it’s in line with our core mission here in MENA to help promote and preserve local Arabic content on the web whether it was on YouTube, Search, Maps or Play. Through our collaboration with Emirates, we hope we can make Arabic literature more accessible and enjoyable than ever. There is so much opportunity to build the digital ecosystem here and we’re happy to have partners like Emirates make it happen.”
'Celebrating Arabic Reading', which was launched in support of UAE’s Year of Reading, aims to raise literacy rates among adults in the Middle East and North Africa, which currently stands at 67 percent as opposed to a global average of 82 percent, according to UNESCO.
Spearheaded by HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Year of Reading is a nation-wide initiative to encourage reading and nurture the nation's collective philomathy "to support the country's knowledge economy."
Books are available here.
(Main Image courtesy of Emirates Airline)