Oman's mobile phone subscriber base crosses 7 million
June 7, 2017 | 8:52 PM
by Staff Reporter
The number of mobile phone lines grew by 2.7 per cent to 7,053,727 as of the end of April.

Muscat: Oman’s mobile phone subscriber base crossed 7 million at the end of April 2017, with a penetration rate of more than 150 per cent.

The number of mobile phone lines grew by 2.7 per cent to 7,053,727 as of the end of April, compared with the previous year, according to recent statistics published by the National Centre of Statistical Information (NCSI).

Prepaid subscriptions rose by 2.7 per cent to 6,422,006, while the number of post paid subscriptions stood at 631,721 at the end of April.

With the aim to increase competition in the telecom sector, Telecom Regulatory Authority (TRA) had invited operators from across the region to apply for a third mobile operator, the results of which will be announced soon.

“According to TRA, this should happen by the first week of September. They are studying all the proposals and the process will be cleared soon,” Raed Haddadin, chief executive officer of Renna Mobile, recently told the Times of Oman.

In 2016, TRA had launched eight digit mobile numbers, which began with 7 as most of the numbers beginning with 9 had been used up.

The latest NCSI data also showed that the number of internet subscribers grew by 13.6 per cent to 306,186. “Fixed broadband subscribers, including DSL and WiMAX stood at 303,641, while dial-up subscriptions fell by 0.8 per cent to 2,545 subscribers,” the NCSI said.

Active mobile broadband subscriptions reached more than 4,102,537, reflecting a rise of 4.2 per cent, from the end of 2016.

However, residents see the milestone as just the beginning. “Now everyone in Oman expects that their mobile device will handle every task so it will continue to grow,” Suresh Saha, an Indian expat living in Oman said.

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