Mobile broadband set to soar in Arab world

KSA has about 3mn mobile broadband users; 63% access internet via mobiles.

Tags: Arab Advisors GroupMobile broadbandUnited Arab Emirates
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Mobile broadband set to soar in Arab world 63% of internet users in key markets such as Saudi Arabia access internet through their mobile handsets, says an Arab Advisors Group study.
By  Nithyasree Trivikram Published  June 1, 2011

Mobile broadband is booming in the Arab World with 14 Arab countries having high-speed 3G networks, according to a study by Arab Advisors Group, a research and consulting company.

While the 3G mobile broadband reached 1.37 million subscriptions in Morocco by the end of 2010, in Saudi Arabia the number of subscriptions reached close to 3 million subscriptions during the same period, the report said.

Jawad J. Abbassi, founder and general manager of Arab Advisors Group, said: "With the advent of high-speed mobile networks and smart phones, mobile users are increasingly accessing the internet on their mobile handsets. Arab Advisors Group's latest research shows that 63% of internet users in key markets such as Saudi Arabia access internet through their mobile handsets via a 3G connection or Wi-Fi, up from 47% in 2008."

He said that with the wide availability of smart phone devices in the Arab World, content creators and application developers have been quick to capitalise on the opportunity these devices present.

"Our research shows that by March 2011, there were more than 800 applications either created by Arab developers or available in Arabic on the three major platforms alone such as Apple App Store, Blackberry App World and Android Market, and this number is rapidly increasing with new applications published every day."

The firm has released this study prior to the launch of the 8th Media and Telecoms Convergence Conference to take place in Amman, Jordan, on 6-7 June.

The conference is set to attract about 600 executives who will discuss market trends, growth strategies, and the boundaries between media and telecom operators.

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