Why Don’t People Use Nepali Language Software?

Pat Hall, Ganesh Ghimire, Maria Newton


We have been concerned about the low levels of use of software localised to Nepali and conducted a survey to find out just how widely the Nepali software platforms were being used and what determined their use or otherwise. We carried out interviews across Nepal to analyse this, using grounded theory. Nepali software is not widely used, and we found two areas which accounted for this. Firstly, the interface was difficult to use because keyboards were not marked in Devanagari, and because the translations were thought to be too formal and Sanskritised. Secondly, users worked as socio-economic groups, wanting to use the same interface as those around them so as to share knowledge and data. The English interface is valued more highly, with the Nepali interface only valued for those in rural areas who could not understand English. We suggest various actions that could be undertaken to overcome these barriers to use.


Nepali Language Software; interface; rural areas; development; digital divide

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