A Look at the Most Popular Arabic Apps for iOS

by Ahmed Gabr, January 24, 2013

app store

Developing smartphone apps has been a dominant trend in the Middle East market. Thanks to low costs and the appeal of quick returns, many developers in the Arab region have turned to iPhone apps in particular as an opportunity to monetize.

Apple offers a localized App Store version in 12 Arab countries: Algeria, Bahrain, Egypt, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Tunis, the UAE and Yemen. Here's a quick look at the top 10 apps in these local iPhone App Stores, which were the 10 most downloaded apps at time of writing.

Saudi Arabia   

saudi app store

  • 5 out of the 10 most popular applications on the KSA App Store were created by Arab developers.
     
  • The most popular applications downloaded by Saudi users were service apps: Tafasseel, for reporting traffic violations, Kashef, a traffic monitors locator, and Dalila for land navigation.
     
  • App prices ranged between 4 and 18 Saudi Riyals.
     
  • iTechno alone developed the 2 highest-selling apps among the top 10.

Egypt

  • The most popular apps among Egyptian users were not originally Arabic, despite the fact that a large number of iPhone apps developers are Egyptians.
     
  • Currently, the biggest hit apps on the Egyptian market are Anghami, Talawati and Hotlines Egypt.
     
  • The Arabic application with the widest success in App Store Egypt is Anghami, a platform dedicated to music lovers who can enjoy and download the latest Arabic and international releases, while discovering more music genres that suit their tastes.
     
  • Talawati is a prayer recitation application. Hotlines Egypt is a simple servicing app that shares telephones numbers of the major service establishments and emergency references in Egypt.

United Arab Emirates

  • Anghami is also among the top 10 apps in the UAE.
  • InstArabic and TextArabic are 100% Arabic applications that scored high rankings on the UAE iPhone app store. The first offers editing options for pictures, with a special Arabic calligraphy writing feature, while the second allows users to write with ornamented Arabic calligraphy and share creations with friends. 

Kuwait

esal emjarib
  • Anghami maintains its spot among the most frequently downloaded apps in the Arab region, including Kuwait.
     
  • At #2 is Es’al Mjarreb (Ask an Expert) is a local application that allows users to review and appraise local Kuwaiti services and companies. 
     
  • Grand Cinemas Kuwait is another local app for movies lovers who like to be updated on calendars and on the latest releases in Grand Cinemas complex in Kuwait, or who wish to purchase tickets online. 

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Ahmad is a writer and a tech analyst, passionate about technology and electronics. He is the founder of GadgetsArabia, the first tech blog in Arabic and the Editor-in-Chief of Swalif.Net. You can follow him on Twitter@ahmdgabr or by email at ahmedgabr[at]swalif[dot]net

 
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