Languages in Belgium are a real pain in the ass! We have 3 official languages: Dutch, French and German. It generates a ton of problems and even xenophobia. These problems have consequences on our everyday life, and even on our access to technology.
If you live in Belgium and your OS is in English, most search engines and websites will assume that you’re a Dutch speaking person. Because, you know, French speaking Belgians don’t speak English (am I a joke to you?).
This is already ridiculous, but it gets worse… When the Homepod was released a few years ago, Apple wouldn’t sell it in Belgium. While it can recognize Dutch (the one that’s spoken in the Netherlands), it can’t make sense out of the Dutch that’s spoken by Belgians because it is more of a dialect than the real thing. Since those people have a very fragile sensibility when it comes to their language, Apple decided not to sell its voice operated device in the entire country.
But wait, it gets even worse… While the official Apple website doesn’t sell the new Homepod Mini, you can purchase it on the websites of other shops… Only if you set these webshops to French!
So, if you’re a Belgian who uses an OS in English, it is assumed that you’re a Dutch speaking person. But if you want to use a voice operated device that recognizes English, you have to buy it in French. Wtf?!