Oman - Telecoms, Mobile, Broadband and Forecasts

  • July 2014
  • -
  • Paul Budde Communication Pty Ltd
  • -
  • 35 pages

Regulatory review helps competition prospects in Oman

Oman possesses a technologically developed telecoms market due to investment by Oman's two telecom network operators. Omantel and Nawras have invested significantly in fixed and mobile access networks, transmission backhaul, broadband connectivity and international connectivity.

Competition is lacking in the fixed market, as evident by the incumbent's almost 90% market share. To determine the level of competition the telecoms regulator, the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA), completed a telecoms market competitiveness review in 2013. The report found both Omantel and Nawras were dominant in a number of telecoms market categories which encompassed fixed, data and mobile at both the wholesale and retail level. The report recommended a number of temporary regulatory measures to address the dominance of the two network operators and hence ensure a competitive market.

Broadband services are available in Oman via ADSL, Fibre-to-the-Home (FttH), WiFi, WiMAX, fixed wireless and mobile broadband. Broadband represents the majority of Internet connections and competition is predominantly infrastructure based. Mobile broadband now represents the overwhelming majority of total broadband connections. Oman has taken advantage of its geographical location to improve international Internet bandwidth and redundancy, with three new submarine cables entering service in 2012 and another one scheduled for service in 2015.

Recognising the potential of applying ICT to improve both social and economic development, Oman has taken steps to develop a knowledge-based society. Government initiatives have been instrumental in creating the online services that make up this digital economy, encompassing the areas of education, health, government administration and smart grids.

Oman's mobile market continues its role as the most dynamic telecoms sector, mobile network operators OmanTel and Nawras compete against Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNO)s FRiENDi, Majan Telecom, Mazoon Mobile, Injaz Telecom and Samatel. Underpinning competition is implementation of mobile number portability, with Oman one of the first countries in the region to implement the regulatory requirement. Prepaid represents the overwhelming majority of mobile connections.
Given the mature mobile voice market, both OmanTel and Nawras have shifted their focus to mobile broadband, deploying HSPA and LTE networks. Take up has been very successful, with mobile broadband subscriptions outnumbering fixed broadband subscriptions by over 15 to 1. One of the impacts of the increased proliferation of mobile Internet and smartphones has been the falling number of SMS/MMS messages sent.

Companies covered in this report include:
OmanTel, Nawras, Sultanate of Oman Television, FRiENDi, Majan Telecom, Mazoon Mobile, Injaz Telecom, Samatel.
This report provides a comprehensive overview of trends and developments in Oman's telecommunications market. The report analyses the mobile, Internet, broadband, digital TV and converging media sectors. Subjects include:
Market and industry analyses, trends and developments;
Facts, figures and statistics;
Industry and regulatory issues;
Infrastructure;
Major players, revenues, subscribers, ARPU
Digital economy
Mobile voice and data markets;
Broadband (FttH, DSL, wireless);
Convergence and digital media;
Broadband subscriber forecasts to 2023;

Table Of Contents

1. Executive summary
2. Key statistics
2.1 Country overview
3. Telecommunications market
3.1 Overview of Oman's telecom market
4. Regulatory environment
4.1 Background
4.2 Regulatory authority
4.3 Telecom sector liberalisation in Oman
4.3.1 ISP licences
4.3.2 Second fixed-line licence
4.3.3 2013 Market competitiveness report
4.4 Privatisation
4.4.1 Omantel restructure
4.4.2 IPO sale 2005
4.4.3 Further share sale
4.5 Interconnect
4.6 Network Access
4.7 Number Portability (NP)
4.8 VoIP
4.9 Universal Service Obligation (USO)
5. Fixed network operator in Oman
5.1 Oman Telecommunications Company (Omantel)
5.2 Nawras Telecom (Omani-Qatari Telecommunications Company)
6. Telecommunications infrastructure
6.1 National telecom network
6.1.1 Alternative infrastructure
6.2 International infrastructure
6.2.1 Submarine cable networks
6.2.2 Satellite networks
7. Broadband access market
7.1 Overview
7.1.1 Internet and broadband statistics
7.2 Broadband subscriber forecasts
7.2.1 Scenario 1 higher growth
7.2.2 Scenario 2 lower growth
7.3 Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL)
7.4 Fibre to the Home (FttH)
7.5 Wireless broadband
7.5.1 WiFi
7.5.2 WiMAX
8. Digital economy/digital media
8.1 Overview
8.2 Knowledge Oasis Muscat
8.3 Services
8.3.1 E-commerce
8.3.2 E-health
8.3.3 E-learning
8.3.4 E-government
8.4 Smart Grid
9. Digital broadcasting
9.1 Overview of the broadcasting market
10. Mobile communications
10.1 Overview of Oman's mobile market
10.1.1 Mobile statistics
10.2 Regulatory issues
10.2.1 Second mobile licence
10.2.2 Third mobile licence
10.2.3 Reseller/MVNO licences
10.2.4 Roaming tariff reduction
10.3 Mobile technologies
10.3.1 Analogue
10.3.2 Digital
10.3.3 Third generation (3G)
10.3.4 Long-term evolution (LTE)
10.4 Major mobile operators
10.4.1 Oman Mobile Telecommunications (OMTC)
10.4.2 Nawras Telecom (Omani-Qatari Telecommunications Company)
10.5 MVNO operators
10.5.1 Connect Arabia/FRiENDi Teleco/Halafoni
10.5.2 Majan Telecom/Renna
10.5.3 Mazoon Mobile
10.5.4 Injaz International Telecommunications / Apna Mobile
10.5.5 Samatel
10.6 Mobile voice services
10.6.1 Prepaid
10.6.2 Satellite mobile
10.7 Mobile messaging
10.7.1 Short Message Service (SMS)
10.7.2 Multimedia Messaging Service (MMS)
10.8 Mobile broadband
10.9 Mobile content and applications
10.9.1 Mobile TV
11. Related reports

Tables and Charts
Table 1 Country statistics Oman 2014
Table 2 Telephone network statistics 2014
Table 3 Internet user statistics 2014
Table 4 Fixed Broadband statistics 2014
Table 5 Mobile statistics 2014
Table 6 National telecommunications authority
Table 7 GDP growth and inflation 2005 - 2014
Table 8 Fixed line market share by subscribers and revenue 2011 - 2013
Table 9 Omantel fixed-line ARPU 2003 - 2013
Table 10 Omantel Group financial data 2003 2013
Table 11 Nawras fixed line subscribers and ARPU 2010 - 2013
Table 12 Fixed lines in service and teledensity 1995 - 2014
Table 13 Internet users and penetration 1998 - 2014
Table 14 Fixed-line Internet subscribers 2000 - 2013
Table 15 Fixed broadband subscribers 2004 - 2014
Table 16 Omantel Fixed Internet ARPU 2008 - 2013
Table 17 Nawras fixed broadband subscribers 2010 - 2013
Table 18 International Internet bandwidth 2003 - 2013
Table 19 Household PC penetration 2007 - 2014
Table 20 Forecast broadband subscribers higher growth scenario 2014, 2018; 2023
Table 21 Forecast broadband subscribers lower growth scenario 2014, 2018; 2023
Table 22 Mobile subscribers and penetration 1994 - 2014
Table 23 Mobile operators, subscribers and annual change June 2013
Table 24 Mobile sector total ARPU 2005 - 2013
Table 25 Mobile operator and MVNO market share 2010 - 2013
Table 26 Oman Mobile ARPU 2002 - 2003; 2005 - 2013
Table 27 Nawras subscribers 2008 - 2013
Table 28 Nawras financial data 2007 - 2013
Table 29 Nawras pre and postpaid ARPU 2007 2013
Table 30 Total prepaid and postpaid subscribers 2005 - 2013
Table 31 Nawras prepaid and postpaid subscribers 2007 - 2013
Table 32 Omantel prepaid and postpaid subscribers 2008 - 2013
Table 33 SMS messages sent 2006 - 2013
Table 34 MMS messages sent 2010 - 2013
Table 35 Active mobile broadband subscriptions 2007 - 2013
Table 36 Omantel mobile broadband subscribers 2010 - 2013
Table 37 Nawras mobile broadband subscribers and ARPU 2008 - 2013

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