In 2016, Trump won the UAE’s popular vote, says Google

Hillary Clinton was left far behind in Google's annual Year in Search

Donald Trump was the most-searched for person in the UAE in 2016
Donald Trump was the most-searched for person in the UAE in 2016. Illustration by Luis Vazquez/ Gulf News

At least on Google, Donald Trump seems to have held sway all through 2016. As the year winds down, the search engine released its list of top trends for the UAE over the past 12 months, and the US President-elect is right up there with Brexit, Euro 2016 and – Pokémon Go (despite, or perhaps because of, its late release)!

Entertainment was among the defining trends for the year, perhaps because people were looking to get away from what seems to have been one of the most abysmal years. Besides regular fixtures such as the Oscars, the most searched-for destinations in the UAE were naturally the new theme parks that have opened their doors in recent months.

And it seems we’re a nation obsessed with dead celebrities. Trump and arch-rival Hillary Clinton were the only living people to make it to the list of top people searched for. Indian actress Pratyusha Banerjee, Pakistani social media star Qandeel Baloch and Syrian poet Nizar Qabbani were joined by Alan Rickman, David Bowie, Prince, and of course, Muhammad Ali.

Obligatory quote: “We always look forward to this part of the year where we share how the world searched for 2016. Year in Search is a look back at what caught the attention and curiosity of our users in the Middle East and North Africa over the past 12 months and as always, the results are diverse in the UAE,” Joyce Baz, Head of Communications at Google, Middle East and North Africa, said in a media handout.

Here are the most trending search queries in the UAE in 2016, courtesy Google:

General searches

1. Euro 2016
2. Pokémon Go
3. Rio Olympics
4. Donald Trump
5. Ramadan
6. T20 World Cup 2016
7. iPhone SE
8. Suicide Squad
9. Eid Al Adha
10. Why is there a leap day?


1. Donald Trump
2. Pratyusha Banerjee
3. Qandeel Baloch
4. Nizar Qabbani
5. Muhammad Ali
6. Prince
7. Christina Grimmie
8. Alan Rickman
9. David Bowie
10. Hillary Clinton


1. Brexit
2. Oscars 2016
3. Eid Al Adha 2016
4. Fly Dubai crash
5. Gitex 2016
6. Holi 2016
7. Panama Papers
8. Dubai Canal opening
9. Chinese New Year 2016
10. Pakistan vs England cricket match


1. Suicide Squad
2. Deadpool
3. Sultan
4. The Revenant
5. Captain America Civil War
6. Batman vs Superman
7. Conjuring 2
8. Pulimurugan
9. Rustom
10. Finding Dory


1. Love yourself
2. Barbes (Arabic song)
3. Panda
4. Closer
5. One Dance
6. Hali Hali (Arabic song)
7. One Call Away
8. 7 years
9. Photograph
10. Hola (by Joey Montana)

Destinations in the UAE

1. IMG World
2. Legoland Dubai
3. Dubai Opera
4. Cirque du Soleil Dubai
5. Dubai Garden Glow
6. The Green Planet
7. Outlet Village Dubai
8. F1 Abu Dhabi 2016
9. Last Exit dubai
10. Global Village


To see more information about Google’s Year in Search across the globe and to watch the company’s annual video, click here