Ahmad F Al-Shagra
Co-founder of Nadrus.com, Ex-Editor of The Next Web ME, trainer, blogger, and programmer. Co-founder of Nadrus.com, Ex-Editor of The Next Web ME, trainer, blogger, and programmer.
Egypt, Cairo based Sarmady launched yesterday a new Arabic news website named Mujaz.me (Mujaz meaning abbreviated), an investment I don’t see the purpose of other than a testing bed for mobile web development.
I remember back in the mid 2000’s when Arabic news websites took off around the region with the most successful still being among us like Elaph and Syrianews.
It appears Sarmady, the mobile advertisement and development arm of Vodaphone Egypt have just now realized it pays to get into the Arabic news aggregating industry.
The launch which follows in close footsteps that of regional giant Yahoo! Maktoob’s news homepage revamp does show one interesting feature other portals will hopefully learn from. A fully functional Mobile version.
The portal acts as an Arabic only news aggregator, but don’t know how the news is gathered nor whether or not Sarmady pays a fee for displaying the information in a Digg looking interface that pulls the information out the original publisher’s website then into Mujaz.me for a consumption technique similar to that of Digg, but without the user digging functionality.
What Mujaz.me’s people take pride in the most is the fact the user interface is optimized for any mobile phone. After testing it on an HTC Desire, Nokia and a couple of other devices where it displayed the best functionality and display on the Nokia.
The creators of Mujaz have opted to offer a short version of the news stories upon clicking on headlines from the homepage providing a ‘click here for more details’ link, which didn’t work for us.
I’d say Mujaz isn’t revolutionary in terms of the mechanism content is consumed. They certainly have an advantage over other portals like Yahoo! Maktoob & CnnArabic.com. Those Arabic portals don’t even offer a mobile version, unlike their international counterparts.
So if you’re looking for a way consume Arabic news on the mobile, you might want to give Mujaz.me a try.
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