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Instagram adds right-to-left language support starting with Arabic, Farsi, and Hebrew

Instagram adds right-to-left language support starting with Arabic, Farsi, and Hebrew

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Photo by Amelia Holowaty Krales / The Verge

Instagram today added support for languages that are written and read from right to left, starting with Arabic, Farsi, and Hebrew. It’s been a long time coming for such a software update, considering Instagram has up until today supported 33 languages, including everything from Tagalog to Romanian to Bahasa Melayu. Instagram says it had to reformat its entire app to support an opposite text flow, according to TechCrunch.

Instagram has for quite some time supported languages like Chinese, Korean, and Japanese that can be read right to left and top to bottom, but never before has it supported exclusively right-to-left languages. There are still some popular oens left out, including Urdu and Azeri, but Instagram is starting with official country languages to mainly help Android users of the MENA (or Middle East and North Africa) region.

Image: Instagram

To that end, and because Android is the operating system of choice for more than 70 percent of the Arabic-speaking community, the right-to-left update is live today on Android with iOS support coming soon. According to TechCrunch, there are more than 60 million Instagram users in the MENA region.

“With this update, we hope more people around the world will be able to connect with the people and interests that matter to them,” the company writes in its blog post on the update. Language preferences are found in the main many of the settings panel, and the new options should be available now given the update is first installed. For other users, the right-to-left languages are automatically translated into their preferred language.