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Now read news in Urdu with Pencil News app

Faryal Nadeem Apr 23, 2017
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Urdu is the mother language of most of the citizens in Pakistan, but the language is ignored in many organizations or institutions. Talking about the applications and various news websites, they are also built in the English language because users resort to read news from English platforms. That is why, Pencil News app provides the exceptional service, which aims to solve the problem by introducing a cross-platform news service that allows the readers to read news in the Urdu language. Even the designed interface is also in Urdu language. The app uses the Nastalia Urdu font, which makes reading content easier and simpler. Even the foreign users are non-fluent Urdu speakers and help to add comments in Urdu language.

The pencil is a startup company, which launched the product. It is the brainchild of a group of Stockholm-based technology entrepreneurs and startup investors. All entrepreneurs own Pakistani background and were studying the user market from last few year.

They have researched and realized that the content must be published in the local languages so that the majority of Pakistanis will help to benefit the technology. The individuals are engaged in many R&D activities to develop the natural language procession applications in Urdu. They are also seeking to provide the services in other regional languages such as Sindhi, Balochi, Punjabi and Pashto.

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Urdu language is tough and has alternate sounds for all alphabets, which will lead to letter ambiguity. The team of the Pencil News has made a great transliteration algorithm that focuses on making the system context aware. By using the services, they aim to target the individuals who like to consume stuff in Urdu.

Even the public response is tremendous because they have received 70,000 downloads in just two months because it was fully launched in February 2017. They are the top most applications on Google Play Store for news updates with a rating of 4.6. They were able to gather more than 2 million screen views with the customer base belonging more than 70 countries including UK, UAE, Saudi Arabia, US, Pakistan and many others.

In future, they will be working on news personalization, which allows users to receive news updates, which is related to the area of interest. The technology will be integrated into Facebook posts that will allow the users to write a caption in Roman Urdu and would be converted than in Native Urdu.

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