At Anant, when we speak about digital inclusion and the need for vernacular language apps, we are thinking of nearly 1 billion Indians who are not conversant in English. However, it’s important to remember that India is not the only country where digital inclusion is a challenge. The USA has an estimated 25 million individuals who do not speak English well – predominantly Hispanics, Chinese, and Vietnamese, as well as a growing number of people from African countries. And it is certainly harder to live in the US without a good knowledge of English, than it is to live in India.
Technology, both mobile and web-based, have been deployed in the USA to help bridge the digital divide with non English speakers.
As in India, a growing number of non-English speakers in the US are accessing the internet from mobile devices. This has prompted non-profits to develop mobile apps and bilingual SMS services that complement their web resources. For example, CitizenShip Works, an organisation that supports immigrants, has a mobile app with study guides, flash cards and interactive tools in English and Spanish.
Health care is a sector which relies on effective communication. Healthcare provider CentraCare uses wireless mobile touch screens to provide video remote interpreting by the Language Access Network (LAN) in more than 210 languages in addition to American Sign Language for the deaf and hard of hearing.
It also makes good business sense to engage with communities in their own language. Veo is a bilingual shopping app that connects brands with Hispanics in the USA, offering free product samples, recipes and giveaways. Brands like General Mills and Clorox use the app to offer curated deals that are likely to appeal to the community. Research has shown that Hispanics are more likely than others to follow a brand or celebrity in social media, and it’s also a young and tech-savvy segment with a projected purchasing power of $1.5 trillion by 2015. Too often we associate non-English speaking with lack of affluence, which is not always the case, either in the US, or in India.
At Anant Computing, we provide a platform that delivers high quality native apps in every Indian language, on any mobile device or OS. We want to be the catalyst for our clients’ imagination when it comes to designing innovative mobile applications for non English speakers. “The sky is the limit, and the canvas is still empty, but together we can start to fill it in.”
Anant Computing Platform (ACP) is a one of its kind solution that takes care of the total gamut of app development needs. It has been designed with an aim to deliver an enriching app experience in every Indian language, on any mobile device or OS. Developed with an integrated and modular design approach, our platform offers a robust, scalable and cost effective solution for corporate clients, developers, NGOs and the government. Our vision when we designed Anant was a more digitally inclusive India, where everyone with a mobile phone can access high quality apps, sans language barriers.