Oman’s second largest telecom services provider Nawras is investing $350 million in the next three years to upgrade its network infrastructure and so far has spent $130 million in the last five months.
“This year will be an exciting year for us as we are turbocharging our network program. We have taken all the base stations from Al Bustan to beyond Al Musannah and completely replaced all of them with the latest base stations to offer super-fast broadband service [4G LTE] three weeks ago, which mean we can use all the frequencies rolled out by the Omani government,” Ross Cormack, CEO of Nawras, told Gulf News.
Apart from these, Nawras has doubled the amount of broadband data traffic that can be carried at any given time and added new base stations.
Nawras is expected to benefit from the initiatives taken by the government and be more active in the fixed broadband market.
“The new initiative will enable us to benefit from the extra frequency and get out coverage and speed of our network into shape,” he said.
“We are now attracting all the customers who have left us in looking for a better and faster experience from our rivals. They are coming back as we also offer better and faster networks,” he said.
Nawras offers 4G with speeds of up to 15 Mbps and 5Mbps on 3G and serves more than two million customers.
Nawras offers 4G LTE services in greater Muscat and covers around 40 per cent of Oman. It has a market share of around 42 per cent in the mobile phone space.
“We are a customer-centric company and constantly evolving our services to offer exciting products and services this year. Our fiber to the home network is very small and offer 100Mbps broadband speed. Fibre brings in growth to the economy and useful for businesses due to heavy constant usage,” he said.
The telco operator lost 14.7 million Omani riyals from its budgeted SMS revenue last year due to strong use of WhatsApp by Omanis.
“We had budgeted 14.7 million Omani riyals from SMS last year, but that evaporated as data due to WhatsApp. So instead of beating them we formed an exclusive partnership with WhatsApp. This deal gives us the opportunity to introduce new services based on this extremely popular messaging platform. It shows how customer-centric we are as a company,” he added.