Ooredoo is working hard to build bigger, faster networks across all their markets and in particular in their home market of Qatar. Ahead of the LTE MENA conference in Dubai, we caught up with Cody Carver Postier, Senior Manager Mobile Data Services at Ooredoo Qatar to find out how Ooredoo’s LTE networks will be enriching the lives of their consumers in 2015 and beyond.
“We’re giving them access to the best content and apps, providing the fastest upload and download times” he said “We believe the key to encouraging customers is to introduce new devices, offer incentives to upgrade and to make it as easy as possible for customers to move to 4G.”
“When 4G was new to Qatar and new to the region, I do not think customers knew exactly what they were in for. We witnessed a very immediate increase in the average data usage among our 4G customers. We expected an increase during the first month of use as customers began to enjoy the benefits of faster streaming and quicker times in posting to social media sites, but what we found was that this increase was not temporary, once the capability was there, customers really amped up their data usage, not only increasing time spent on traditional sites, but it seemed to open the door for more video and high definition apps.
“In these early stages of deployment Ooredoo was very cautious with 4G activations; understanding that most customers could be confused about how this dramatic increase in speed would affect their daily usage, so we introduced a 4G activation key, so that customers knew exactly what they were activating on their device.
“However, going into 2015, after the launch of 4G+ and an increase in network speeds of up to 300Mbps, we felt that the activation key was no longer necessary as customers wanted immediate access to the bigger and faster 4G+ network, which is leading us into the direction we are really excited about – where we start to see that line between fixed and mobile networks really blur.
“The wider MENA region has experienced significant LTE growth over the last 12 months too; more coverage, more handsets, more capacity, and most importantly – more businesses taking advantage of the opportunity 4G provides. During the last year we saw a lot more companies enjoy the speed and mobility afforded by Ooredoo Qatar’s 4G+ network.
“One specific example was the growth in mobile CCTV applications, used at various construction sites around the country, as well as live-streaming various special events. We are also seeing a direct correlation between the 4G+ network growth and the ability of companies to increase the amount of traffic they pass through via mobile applications.
I believe 2015 will really be the “Internet of Things” year. This years CES event was all about new wearable devices, smart devices, and drones. Ooredoo Qatar recently showcased the “connected home”, something that in the past seemed very futuristic with self watering potted plants, refrigerators that alert you when you were low on eggs, and video notification each time someone showed up on the doorstep. These are no longer “futuristic” but represent products which can be purchased today and integrated across 4G and Wi-Fi networks.
“The LTE MENA event is really a “peek around the corner, it allows innovative vendors to showcase the advancements they have made in the industry and give operators like Ooredoo Qatar an opportunity to analyse these advancements and begin to mold these into specific customer solutions. Additionally it provides an opportunity for telecom professionals to share new ideas, ideas of how the technology will be moving forward and what things we might be seeing in the next year and beyond.
Cody will be discussing Pricing, Packages, Partnerships and Innovative ways to increase LTE subscriptions at LTE MENA this year, which will be taking place at the Conrad Hotel in Dubai on the 11th – 13th of May. Check out the full speaker line-up at www.lteconference.com/mena