Arabic language can now be used in internet address name
The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) is enabling the use of non-Latin characters for an entire internet address name for the first time in the internet’s history.
According to ICANN, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates are the first three countries to use Arabic characters in the last portion of their internet domain names, such as dot-eg (Egypt), dot-sa (Saudi Arabia) or dot-ae (United Arab Emirates). They are called country code top-level domains or ccTLDs.
ICANN has developed a global system for the use of other scripts in domain names that was opened up in November, when ICANN began accepting applications for IDNs last fall. Arabic is among the most highly used languages on the internet today, with Middle-East having an average internet penetration of just over 20%.
Since the IDN program is being rolled out in stages, it is expected to be initially only be used on a limited basis for individual country domain names. But eventually IDNs will be broadly used in the top level domain portion of internet address names, ICANN said.
Rod Beckstrom, president and chief executive officer of ICANN, said: “This isn’t just a minor change for the Internet, it’s a seismic shift that will forever change the online landscape. This is the beginning of a transition that will make the Internet more accessible and user friendly to millions around the globe, regardless of where they live or what language they speak.”