The mobile operators are competitive and comprise of Saudi Telecom Company (STC), Mobily and Zain KSA – as well as MVNOs. The outbreak of the Covid-19 virus has resulted in more workers, students and citizens being based at home and the telecoms operators are expecting more demand for their services. The operators have demonstrated a sense of social responsibility during the Covid-19 crisis by launching various initiatives to support society in terms of education, enterprise, and healthcare.
Recently the operators have been exploring ways to monetise the thousands of mobile towers spread throughout Saudi Arabia. In 2019 STC established a subsidiary to manage its tower infrastructure, called TAWAL.
5G is firmly on the agenda for Saudi Arabia with the regulator awarding new spectrum for 4G/5G use in early 2019. STC, Zain KSA and Mobily have all developed various 5G partnerships with solution providers like Huawei, Nokia, Cisco and Ericsson and the three operators have launched preliminary services.
While Saudi Arabia’s fixed broadband penetration is considered low on a global scale; there has been significant work towards developing fibre-based networks instead of DSL, which still comprise the largest market share.
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