Ramadan, with a little help from Apple, Google

Smartphones are everywhere and so is Google, Apple and to some extent BlackBerry and Windows.

This Ramadan, tech giants have come out in full force to help you observe the holy month of Ramadan.

Both Google and Apple have launched their own Ramadan hubs with campaigns running across the four weeks leading up to Eid.

For Apple, this is not the first time they have launched a major campaign during Ramadan. The dedicated section in iTunes on its regional site has four sections such as Entertainment, Food and Health, Travel Tools and Planners and Utilities where users can apart from planning their every day schedule, can watch family friendly films, play games or even plan a vacation.

Google on the other hand has a more vibrant Ramadan hub with a theme, “Do More together this Ramadan,” where four different “together” sections such as Plan Together, Get Together, Eat Together and Enjoy Together.

With location service enabled, you will be able to set the countdown to the moon phase and sunset.

“There are 43,200 minutes in Ramadan. Make the most of every minute by scheduling get-togethers and penciling in key events on Google Calendar,” reads the Google tagline for Plan Together which also provides you links to some to entertainment content on YouTube.

Just below that is a link to Google Keep, an Evernote like service that can sync your notes across web, chrome and Android.

The Get Together section helps you plan your trip be it to friends, relatives or home with Google Maps, even enables you to chat with friends to arrange get-togethers, or connect with relatives or friends who could not make it with Google Hangouts.

Eat Together is obviously more about recipes, braking fast and sharing the experience. Google has even introduced a hashtag on Google plus #ShareRamadan, where users can share pictures or videos and find how other people around the world broke fast with family and friends.

It also provides links to Ramadan themed cooking events, again links to YouTube.

Apple’s hub on the other hand is about delivering the experience of its rich collection of Apps.

The entertainment section has links to games, including many specifically adopted for local and regional audience and in Arabic, movies including titles like Rio and Frozen.

The Food and Health section has links to cooking apps such as JeddahFood, Kitchen Units, Indian recipes etc., apart from apps related to healthy living and cooking magazines.

Travel tools has links to apps related to travel planning, destination guides and travel magazines.

Planners and Utilities has all required links for calendar apps, shopping apps etc.,

However what’s noticeable in both Google and Apple’s Ramadan hubs is an attempt to rope in local and regional developers to showcase their apps and run promotions during Ramadan.

There are a mix of local and regional apps on the App store and many others that you won’t find in the Ramadan hub and come out only through a search.


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