This article was published on November 25, 2010

Yahoo! Sends MENA Users to Arabic Maktoob

Yahoo! Sends MENA Users to Arabic Maktoob
Ahmad F Al-Shagra
Story by

Ahmad F Al-Shagra

Co-founder of, Ex-Editor of The Next Web ME, trainer, blogger, and programmer. Co-founder of, Ex-Editor of The Next Web ME, trainer, blogger, and programmer.

Yahoo! Maktoob ScreenshotYahoo! Maktoob has officially announced the implementation of the new design we reported last week and have started pushing users in its direction. If you’re from the MENA region you probably noticed you Yahoo! landing page is now Maktoob.

When we first checked out the new design we highlighted all the major changes but have noticed a couple of things since the official launch 2 days ago we thought you might find interesting.

According to a Yahoo! Maktoob press release Ahmed Nassef Vice President and Managing Director of Yahoo! Middle East said: “The new homepage is an opportunity for online users to have all their content personalized, tailor-made and adjusted to suit each individual’s preferences.”

He continued “For example, if someone is an avid football fan and regularly reads about football within the Yahoo! Maktoob News and Sports section, the homepage will recognize these habits and will display the latest football relevant news the next time this person visits. If, for example, the online user then changes their browsing habits to only read information about basketball, the home page will recognize this and will start presenting basketball-relevant information.”

The new Yahoo! Maktoob redirects all users who attempt to reach the international Yahoo! homepage from the MENA region to the Arabic version of Yahoo! Maktoob providing them with an option to go back to the international page.

Yahoo! Maktoob default Landing Page with the Redirect bar on top

For Arab countries excluding the UAE, users who access the website for the first time will be redirected to in Arabic, and for those who visit from the UAE, will be redirected to in English from mid December

That is a smart move, although most Maktoob users will probably just stick to the localized version since it’s where regionally relevant content can be found. But there is a small hiccup for English users in the MENA region.

If you happen to be an English oriented MENA user of Maktoob, once you’re redirected to the Arabic Maktoob instead of, you’ll opt to use the English version, which accordingly takes you to the English sub-domain. But instead learning, it forgets.

So if you want to go to the international version of Yahoo, click on the ‘’ link in the Arabic version, or else you’re stuck with Yahoo! Maktoob.

The new design also specifically promotes Yahoo! Maktoob’s new Video on Demand service, which they seem to be producing in-house. It’s actually not so bad if you want the truth, and will probably only get better with 32 million eye balls checking them out.

Let us know if you find anything else out-of-order as I’m sure the guys from Yahoo! Maktoob would like to nail this before they roll out the auto-redirect for their UAE users.

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