Qatar is a telecoms leader in the Middle East

Qatar is a telecoms leader in the Middle East

Publication: qatarday.com – English (English | Website)

Qatar is considered one of the regional leaders in terms of its telecoms maturity; having one of the highest fixed and mobile penetrations in the Middle East region. Qatar has also become one of the more progressive countries globally in terms of its progress towards 5G.

The mobile sector is led by Ooredoo Qatar and Vodafone Qatar. In 2018 Ooredoo Qatar claimed it had deployed the first commercial 5G network in the world and in May 2018 it switched on its live 3.5GHz 5G (Non-Standalone) New Radio (NR) network. During 2019 Ooredoo Qatar further announced it had deployed over 90 5G base stations. Vodafone Qatar is also demonstrating significant progress towards 5G and has also deployed 5G networks based on New Radio (NR) in the 3.5GHz frequency.

Qatari citizens are some of the largest users of the Internet in the Middle East and have embraced Over-The-Top (OTT) services. The operators continue to improve and upgrade their fibre-based broadband networks. In 2019 for example, Vodafone Qatar was upgrading its fibre based networks to support Gigabit speeds.

This valuable report provides analyses, information, industry statistics and insights into Qatar’s progressive telecoms sector.

BuddeComm notes that the outbreak of the Coronavirus in 2020 is having a significant impact on production and supply chains globally. During the coming year the telecoms sector to various degrees is likely to experience a downturn in mobile device production, while it may also be difficult for network operators to manage workflows when maintaining and upgrading existing infrastructure. Overall progress towards 5G may be postponed or slowed down in some countries.

On the consumer side, spending on telecoms services and devices is under pressure from the financial effect of large-scale job losses and the consequent restriction on disposable incomes. However, the crucial nature of telecom services, both for general communication as well as a tool for home-working, will offset such pressures. In many markets the net effect should be a steady though reduced increased in subscriber growth.

Although it is challenging to predict and interpret the long-term impacts of the crisis as it develops, these have been acknowledged in the industry forecasts contained in this report.

The report also covers the responses of the telecom operators as well as government agencies and regulators as they react to the crisis to ensure that citizens can continue to make optimum use of telecom services. This can be reflected in subsidy schemes and the promotion of tele-health and tele-education, among other solutions.

Key developments:

  • Recently consumers have embraced bundled packages, with both the uptake of double and triple-play increasing considerably, assisting the operators in their attempts to diversify operations.
  • The CRA increased its powers in 2018, allowing it greater scrutiny of the operators.
  • Increasing international capacity will assist in Qatar’s long-term development goals as stated in its National Development Strategy document Qatar National Vision 2030.
  • Assessment of the global impact of COVID-19 on the telecoms sector.

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