News Column

Ramadan Apps Sweep Muslim World

July 26, 2013

Nawara Fattahova

ayat holy quran app
Ayat Holy Quran app

During Ramadan, many people use special applications on their mobile phones related to the holy month and the rituals practiced now. Religious applications prevail, as this the is the month of worship and most people shun other activities. Mahmoud, 52, uses prayer time reminders. "I use this application the whole year, but now I added an application reciting verses from the Holy Quran after the athan (call to prayer). I also participate in a weekly service to receive texts on my mobile containing religious information, especially related to this holy month," he explains.

Sara, 30, has added special tones on her mobile. "I have downloaded special tones in the theme of Ramadan for callers to hear when they call me. I also downloaded pictures and e-cards to send as greetings to friends and family at the beginning of the month. I will use the same application at the end of Ramadan for Eid," she pointed out.

Hanadi, 25, is not much into applications and uses chat programs. "I have two main groups on Whatsapp, and each one of them include tens of users, so whatever they post or send I receive. And now they focus on messages, pictures and information related to this holy month. I then forward the posts to my other friends or relatives. I also use an app for TV schedules, as I watch TV more during Ramadan," she noted.

Telecommunication companies have realized the demand for these applications and have prepared a wide range of applications and services related to Ramadan. "We are offering various services related to this month, some are charged weekly while others are onetime payment applications. For instance we have Quraniyat, which provides sciences of the Holy Quran, religious information about life fields, offbeat news and situations of Ramadan. This service is available in English and Arabic. We also have and other Ramadan applications for finding mosque locations, timing of iftar and prayers, Ramadan greetings and others," stressed Fajer, an employee from Wataniya Telecom.

"As most people give alms and donations during Ramadan, we have added this service of charity. Wataniya clients collect points by using their lines and subscriptions and they convert these points into stars, as we call it. With the charity service, they can donate these stars as alms. And finally we also have special mobile competitions during Ramadan," added Fajer.

Abdulaziz n employee with Viva also mentioned many special programs and applications prepared for this month. "Besides the different applications of reciting the Holy Quran and duas (supplications) by various religious sheikhs from Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, we also have the Ojairi calendar, an Islamic services pack that includes sermons which is also available in Hindi, a 'Tadabar' service that provides answers and advice from sheikhs to religious questions, and Quranic miracles," he stated.

There are many more applications and services provided by Viva. "We also have the health app that is related to health issues in Ramadan including eating healthy meals, diseases and medical treatment, and it's confidential. We also offer services on food systems and nutrition. We also have special applications for the deaf and dumb that include entertainment, learning cooking and others," he added.

Competitions are an important part of the programs and applications. "Besides being part of various TV competitions as well as other telecommunication companies, we also have some special competitions on the phone such as Shaara, and Hazar Fazar," concluded Abdulaziz.

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(c)2013 the Kuwait Times (Safat, Kuwait)

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Source: Copyright Kuwait Times 2013