The UAE’s Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) has declared ahead of GITEX Technology Week that it intends to see full competition in the fixed line, internet and IPTV markets in the UAE.
“The intention is to see competition in triple-play services: fixed-telephony, internet access and IPTV,” said Mohamed Al Ghanim, director general, TRA.
“However, there are some technical and commercial issues to be resolved before IPTV can be launched as a bit-stream access service. We are working towards resolving these issues by a commercial launch in December. Hence, the soft launch involves double-play: fixed-telephony and internet access only at this time.”
The TRA does not expect there to be any geographical restrictions on competition and the organisation is still working towards the implementation of mobile number portability in the current quarter.
Al Ghanim said the TRA supports both operators in their efforts to roll out next generation services. “Last year, both of the UAE’s telecom operators started trials for the fourth generation of mobile communication, the LTE,” he said.
“The technology and prospective services were demonstrated in the leading technology exhibitions such as GITEX. Consumers experienced the capabilities of the technology and became aware of the expected benefits. Since then, both of the UAE operators have started larger scale trials and network rollouts with the aim of commercial deployments of the services before the end of this year.”