iKitab launches Android e-book app
Amman, March 19, 2014
Jordan-based iKitab, a company that develops, distributes and markets Arabic e-books, has launched its Yaqut app for Android devices.
The company has developed a new technology that is able to overcome a series of technical difficulties that were the cause of failure of other attempts to perfectly render Arabic eBooks on smart devices with various screen sizes, a statement said.
Yaqut app is now available for all Android devices where users can download and read thousands of Arabic eBooks completely for free. The app is available at www.yaqut.me.
Commenting on the event, iKitab chief executive officer Bilal Al-Khatib said: “As specialists in the field of electronic publishing since 2010, we have uncovered the most important obstacles that hinder the success of publishing eBooks and the reasons for the reluctance of publishers to offer their books through online stores. This is due to the weak financial returns for publishers and lack of confidence on part of the majority of consumers in the region to use their credit cards to buy intangible goods online.”
He added: “Through advanced technologies implemented by Yaqut, which matches international technologies in similar applications such as Amazon’s Kindle and Apple’s iBooks, we were able to protect the intellectual property of authors and publishers as well as help in spreading and promoting their content to the largest possible segment of people. We’re also helping publishers secure additional streams of revenue through every eBook download and page view by advertisement”.
Yaqut, which can be downloaded across various Android app stores, is able to adapt automatically to the size and dimension of any screen. It also provides the ability of modifying the font face and size as well as changing the background colour of the page to enable comfortable and enjoyable reading.
Yaqut also features an incredibly fast search tool for Arabic text in addition to seamless right-to-left browsing, he said.
Ammar Mardawi, the chief technology officer (CTO) of iKitab, said: “To solve the technical issues, it was not enough to recreate technologies similar to the international leaders in eBook publishing in house, we also had to fully support Arabic text. Unlike Latin languages, Arabic is quite unique when it comes to displaying text. While right-to-left browsing is what first comes to mind, the uniqueness of Arabic does not stop there. Much simpler things such as paragraph justification, for example, where Latin languages simply increase spaces between words to justify the lines’ width, Arabic requires a special algorithm which increases the length of the word itself in a very certain manner perfected by Arabic calligraphers centuries ago.”
In order to provide a pleasant atmosphere for reading, Yaqut allows users to switch to night mode which adjusts the screen brightness to match the room lighting. Yaqut also provides the ability to mark text, add notes, and bookmark pages.
As for publishers and authors, Yaqut saves at least 80 per cent of the book production costs while enabling them to reach a much wider audience. Authors are also able to update their publications in a practical and easy manner without incurring financial burdens in printing, publishing and distribution, the statement said. –TradeArabia News Service