Whether you’re a person of faith or not, a good many of those around you probably are, and for those of Muslim faith, Ramadan begins today for over a billion people around the world. At its most simplistic, Ramadan usually requires fasting from dawn to sunset, spending time with families and sharing meals, laughs and more.
Google tells us that its technology helps many practising Muslims to connect and keep up with their religious obligations. They give the example of people looking to Maps to navigate traffic and make it home from work for Iftar, download Google Play apps to plan their day around the sunset and sunrise, and look up Ramadan opening hours of their favourite local shops and restaurants.
In a country like Australia, with so many religions and backgrounds, you might think that Ramadan doesn’t affect you too much, and maybe it doesn’t. However, if you’re visiting a majority Muslim country in the next month or so, knowing what goes and what doesn’t might be very helpful.
To this end, Google is launching My Ramadan Companion (g.co/Ramadan), which gives users customised and locally relevant information, tips, and other content highlighting the richness of what the web can offer during Ramadan around you.
For example, you can find out the sunset time in your location and plan your day accordingly, check out the traffic in your area, navigate to the closest charity Iftar, find and share recipes, and enjoy Ramadan content on YouTube ranging from drama series and comedy sketches and health tips to stay fit during the 30 days of fasting.
Depending on your location, Google Now will show you a range of relevant cards with popular YouTube videos, latest Ramadan news and information, and recommendations for apps that alert you to wake up for Suhur, enable you to design greeting cards for Ramadan to share with the family, find Halal restaurants around you, and countdown to Iftar time.