Very soon you’ll see web addresses written in Chinese or even Arabic!
Since the creation of the web in the 1980’s, domain names have been limited to 26 characters (a-z) of the Latin alphabet, 10 numerals and the hyphen. However, the Internet regulator Icann has made a big breakthrough in our opinion, in voting to allow non-Latin web addresses. So increasingly you will start to see web domain names written in Arabic, Thai and other scripts. An Egyptian applicant is the very first, with the domain name “.masr”, which when written in the Arabic alphabet means “.Egypt”. This move is a step closer to making the web really inclusive globally.
Some internet address have in the past used technical solutions to allow them to use other scripts but until now the suffix still had to use the original 37 characters. This meant that non English speaking web communities were until now forced to use Latin script to access web pages in Chinese and Arabic. The decision by ICANN means that users can access the web in their own script.
“This change is very much necessary for not only half the world's internet users today but more than half, probably, of the future users as the internet continues to spread.” Rod Beckstrom President of Icann.