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DSL subscriber numbers rise

Usage of DSL technology has leapt by more than 80% over the past year, according to the DSL Forum.

Usage of DSL technology has leapt by more than 80% over the past year, according to the DSL Forum.

There are now more than 4.3 million people using the high speed data communications technology, the industry forum said, citing research from UK firm Point Topic.

In the Middle East, Egypt and Qatar scored two of the highest rates of DSL subscriber growth in 2006, according to the research, with both more than doubling subscriber numbers year-on-year.

But it is the UAE that currently has the largest number of DSL subscribers in the region with 207,080 subscribers registered in 2006, a 63.5% increase on 2005.

"The rapidly emerging markets in the Middle East are a testimony to how global standards are improving speed to market," said Robin Mersh, the DSL Forum chief operating officer. "DSL access technology is by far the most popular access technology, accounting for almost 88% of broadband subscribers in the Middle East."