UAE: Don't know Arabic? Now, scan objects around you to learn the language with new app

A sound notification will also help a person understand how to pronounce in Emirati dialect

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Ashwani Kumar

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Published: Tue 20 Dec 2022, 5:36 PM

Local authorities in Abu Dhabi have launched a new app - ‘Scan and Learn Arabic’ - to help community members learn the Arabic language.

Individuals can use the app to scan objects around the city, the names of which are then translated into Arabic. There is also a sound notification, which helps a person understand how to pronounce it in the Emirati dialect. As a start, the app can be used to scan texts at key facilities along the Abu Dhabi Corniche – the first of many sites in the emirate to be added.

The app also features some popular items that can be scanned at your home, like a table, chair, bicycle, steps, tree, and flag, among others, to know their Arabic translation and Emirati dialect.

The Abu Dhabi Arabic Language Centre (ALC), part of the Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi (DCT Abu Dhabi), has helped develop the ‘Scan and Learn Arabic’ app. It has been launched in collaboration with Abu Dhabi’s Department of Community Development (DCD) and the Department of Municipalities and Transport (DMT).

Dr Ali Bin Tamim, Chairman of the ALC, said the aim is to preserve the Arabic language as a core component of Arab and Emirati culture and keep it present in the everyday lives of all community members.

“This initiative allows us to make the most from advanced technologies in our efforts to advance the Arabic language, improve its proficiency among speakers, and cement its position as the primary language of use among native speakers, while paving the way for non-native speakers to learn it,” he said.

Eng Hamad Ali Al Dhaheri, Undersecretary of the DCD, said that learning Arabic will also strengthen social cohesion among all components of our community.

“We fully recognise and appreciate the importance of such initiatives in strengthening our national identity through the Arabic language, one of the most essential foundations in our Arab and Emirati culture.”

The app will help visitors and residents from all segments of the community to learn the Arabic language and use it more in their daily lives.

Abdulla Al Sahi, Undersecretary of the DMT, said, “Our native language is one of the most important means of communication; it has long been the cornerstone of harmony in our societies, offering a platform throughout history for literary, scientific, and social dialogue between various peoples.”

The Department, he said, will work to identify key sites in the emirate of Abu Dhabi throughout all stages of the initiative.

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