Qtel slashes broadband prices by 47%

Qtel (Qatar Telecom) announced today that BarQ ADSL internet users will get up to 47% off their monthly rate while being able to enjoy faster speeds of up to 1 Mbps.

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By  Maddy Reddy Published  June 7, 2004

Qtel (Qatar Telecom) announced today that BarQ ADSL internet users will get up to 47% off their monthly rate while being able to enjoy broadband speeds of up to 1Mbps. BarQ ADSL (Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line) customers can now access a new range of speeds at significantly cheaper prices, ranging from 256 kbps, 512 kbps and to the ultra fast 1 Mbps connection. Customers who apply for a annual subscription with BarQ ADSL, will receive a free modem and free installation. With the new price cuts, customers can double their Internet speed and upgrade from their 256 kbps connection to the faster Internet speed of 512 kbps at no extra charge. Alternatively they can continue with their existing connection speed (256 kbps) and make considerable savings on their normal monthly spending says the state-run telecom operator. Prior to the new price cuts, the monthly rental fee for BarQ was QR (Qatari Riyal) 400 for a 1Mps connection, QR 300 for a 512KB connection and QR 200 for a 256KB connection. In addition, customers will have to pay QR 199 for the installation and also QR 300 for the ADSL equipment. “Fast access is recognised as a key factor in encouraging greater internet usage. The success of our current packages has encouraged us to launch another turbo speed of 512 kbps and also to reduce our prices so that we can now offer our customers faster speeds at no extra cost. Our newly extended BarQ ADSL offering shows our commitment to catering to an even broader spectrum of internet users and to bringing the people of Qatar closer through communication,” says Qtel’s CEO, Dr. Nasser Marafih. BarQ is based on ADSL technology, which provides unlimited 24-hour Internet connection with high-speed downloading. Unlike dial-up Internet access, ADSL is always on and it does not block a subscriber’s telephone line. ADSL subscribers can use existing telephone lines, so both telephone and Internet services can be used simultaneously without any interruption. Currently, the BarQ service is available to serve 90% of Qatar's geographical population. “With BarQ ADSL we have succeeded in providing our customers with the latest in Internet technology. It has proved a popular choice amongst consumers with an ever-growing number of subscribers. Currently we have over 5000 BarQ ADSL customers and that number is constantly growing,” says Khalil Al Emadi, executive director Wireline Services. With a population of 650,000 people, Qatar has one of the highest per capita incomes in the world. However with an internet population of 126,000 users as of December 2003, or 19.4% penetration according to the ITU, Qatar constitutes just 0.7% of total internet usage in the Middle East.

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