du to launch broadband nationwide

UAE operator du plans to launch broadband and pay TV services nationwide in the near future, its chief executive said today.

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By  Michele Howe Published  July 30, 2007

UAE operator du plans to launch broadband and pay TV services nationwide in the near future, its chief executive said today.

Speaking at a press conference, Osman Sultan said the telco planned to ramp up the availability of these services as quickly as possible, without providing a specific timeframe.

Currently du only provides these services in a small number of areas.

"The next step is broadband and pay TV which is a service we provide today but in a restricted area. Our target is to expand as quickly as possible this service nationwide," he said.

Sultan would not say whether du planned to build its own infrastructure in order to offer these services, stating that it was something the firm would have to assess.

du launched its fixed line service four days ago on July 26, having missed its original July 12 deadline set by the UAE regulator.

Sultan said the reason for the delay was because du was waiting for confirmation on testing from Etisalat.

"We were able to perform testing on July 2. We had some remarks. We forwarded these to Etisalat on July 8 and were waiting for a formal answer to confirm to us that we can redo the testing... we did not receive this in time for us [to launch] on July 12," he said.

Sultan said du had not committed to a specific date for the launch of the fixed line service.

Earlier this month, du announced its mobile services subscriber base had reached 500,000.

Sultan said du would provide more details on customer numbers in the company's next financial results, due to be announced in the next few days.

du also today launched a special promotional offer for its international mobile calls, ‘Freetime' which enables users to get free credit when making international calls using du.

The offer lasts July 31 to September 10 and is supported by an advertising campaign starting tomorrow.

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