Odnoklassniki localized into Kyrgyz

Sep 28, 2012

Odnoklassniki.ru, one of the biggest and the most popular social networks in Eastern Europe and Central Asia, has launched a Kyrgyz-language version of its mobile site.
Earlier this spring, social network announced plans to localize into several regional languages, including Uzbek, Kazakh, Armenian, Moldovan, Georgian, and English. So far the company has announced the Uzbek, Moldovan, Armenian, and now Kyrgyz versions of its mobile version. There is also a new English one as well.

Most of the users of Mail.Ru Group’s social network hail from the Russian diaspora, and now the company is trying to attract more users in these countries by offering the network in the local languages. The company, it would seem, is stepping up its drive for the hearts and minds of the region’s users in competition with it’s main regional rival, Facebook (and to some extent, VKonakte).

Following the announcement of the Uzbek-language version in April and the Aremnian version in June, Alexander Izryadnov, a spokesman for Mail.Ru Group presented the Kyrgyz version of the site this month in Bishkek. The news was a surprise to Kyrgyz social media users because localization was not announced along with the others earlier this spring. So far, only the mobile version of the Kyrgyz network is finished, but the full version is expected to be ready later this year.

“Classmates is among the top most popular sites in Kyrgyzstan, ranking third after “Google” and Mail.ru,” Izryadnov at the presentation according to Kloop.kg. “We [...] have done all that we can to make our social network a better communication tool for users and their friends and family in their native language.”

According to Izryadnov, some 808,000 Odnoklassniki users mark Kyrgyzstan as their country.  In an interview with VB.kg, he also said 230,000 Kyrgyz users visit the site (or it’s mobile version) daily. Facebook, in comparision, significantly fewer 40 thousansd peoples, and “VKontakte” has 125,000 users per day. Kyrgyzstan has nearly 2.2 million Internet users, according Internet World Stats informed.

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Ilya Lukash

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