Sharjah: The Etisalat Award for Arabic Children’s Literature has announced that it will be accepting submissions for a new ‘Digital Book App of the Year’ category that carries a prize worth Dh100,000.

The award in the new category will go to the best digital interactive children’s or young adults’ book application, organisers said.

The Etisalat Award for Arabic Children’s Literature, with awards worth a total of Dh1.2 million covering six categories, is organised by the UAE Board on Books for Young People (UAEBBY) and sponsored by ‘Etisalat Group’. The competition aims to promote a culture of reading and instil a love of Arabic books within children by honouring the creative productions of authors, illustrators and publishers in the children’s book industry.

Announcing details of the new category, organisers said that it is open to all publishers and app developers whose products are designed for children and young adults aged 18 years and under.

The accolade will encompass all forms of digital Arabic content available as digital books and apps to highlight and reward the work of developers and publishers. The new category aims to be at the cutting edge of Arabic digital publishing, showcasing creative approaches to design, technology integration and e-reading experiences. The category will accept products for Android, iOS, Kindle and ePub3.

All entries must be in Arabic, and should be released before the date of submission, they said. The jury will select the winner based on graphic quality, audio quality, artistic and technical excellence and informational value, with particular reference to overall publishing excellence and innovation.

Marwa Al Aqroubi, president of the UAEBBY Executive Board, said the award has been constantly developing and expanding its categories.

“The new category is intended to underscore the new and fast-growing technologies, where tablets, mobile phones and other smart electronic devices have become fundamental to acquire, transfer and exchange knowledge. Digital application developers have become partners and key players in the publishing industry,” she said.

All entries will be subject to the final decision of the jury, which will consist of publishing sector experts, including graphic designers, interactive design specialists and new media reviewers.

The Etisalat Award for Arabic Children’s Literature was launched in 2009 by Shaikha Bodoor Bint Sultan Al Qasimi, founder and patron of the UAEBBY.