AWS extends support for Middle East businesses

AWS regional customers Anghami, Careem, Sarwa, and StarzPlay share stage with Werner Vogels, CTO

Magnus Olsson, Careem co-founder and Amazon Web Services customer at AWS Summit Dubai
Magnus Olsson, Careem co-founder and Amazon Web Services customer at AWS Summit Dubai

Amazon Web Services (AWS) had added Arabic language support to Amazon Polly. The service turns Arabic text into lifelike speech using a female voice named Zeina. This was one of the key announcements as the cloud services giant held its AWS Summit in Dubai yesterday.  

Amazon Polly is a cloud service that uses deep learning technologies to offer a range of 59 voices in 29 languages to convert written content into human-like speech. The service supports companies in developing digital products that use speech synthesis for a variety of use cases, including publishing and telephony, automated contact centres, language learning platforms, translation apps, and reading of articles.

AWS had previously announced that it will launch the first Amazon Web Services (AWS) infrastructure Region in the Middle East (data centres) in 2019, located in Bahrain. This will bring its cloud computing technologies close to end users across the Middle East and help organisations in the region speed up their digital initiatives.


The AWS Summit in Dubai kicked-off in the morning with a Women in Tech panel titled Scaling Purpose-Driven Businesses. The panel was organised by Womena and AWS featuring leading female entrepreneurs in the Middle East from Ureed, Little Thinking Minds, The Tempest, Now Money and Nabta Health, who discussed their journeys in creating successful purpose-driven businesses and how they are preparing for their next phase of growth.

The summit keynote featured Dr. Werner Vogels, CTO, one of the forces behind Amazon's approach to cloud computing. The keynote also featured AWS regional customers Anghami, Careem, Sarwa, and StarzPlay, who shared their experiences using the AWS Cloud to innovate and grow.

The full day summit also featured various breakout sessions with AWS customers covering topics around digital transformation, security, and how to build and innovate on the cloud. The day also included the AWS DeepRacer League, the world’s first global autonomous racing league, which gave developers that chance to train, and tune reinforcement learning (RL) models in the online simulator, deploy their models onto AWS DeepRacer for a chance to compete to with the AWS DeepRacer Championship Cup.

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