x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

UAE's high-speed net access earns high marks

The UAE has one of the world's highest quality broadband connections, a study released by Oxford University and Cisco says.

The UAE has one of the world's highest quality broadband connections, a study released by Oxford University and Cisco says.

The Emirates ranked eighth in a listing of global broadband leadership that measures upload and download connection speeds as well as latency, the key criteria for a connection's ability to handle specific internet applications.

The rankings measure the proportion of households and businesses with access to broadband, combined with internet-connection speeds. The global quality score rose 24 per cent, the report said.

According to the report released last month, the UAE has an average broadband connection of 3.1 megabits per second this year, double the speed that was measured last year.

Broadband data were sourced from more than 40 million tests conducted last summer on the internet speed-testing website, speedtest.net.

UAE consumers are able to subscribe to broadband speeds as fast as 30 megabits per second after the country's investment in deploying fibre-optic networks, a technology that can provide nearly unlimited data transfers.

Etisalat, the UAE's largest telecommunications operation, has invested more than Dh5 billion (US$1.36bn) in deploying a fibre-to-home network across the country that is expected to be completed by the end of next year.

"Our aim is to take it to the next level," said Khalifa al Shamsi, the vice president of consumer marketing for Etisalat.

"Eighth is good but good is the enemy of great. We don't want to be only good, we want to be great and among the top three countries in terms of penetration in the world."

Hatem Bamatraf, the senior vice president of technology for du, said his company was already capable of delivering much faster broadband speeds to its users but is waiting for market conditions to make its investment worthwhile.

 

dgeorgecosh@thenational.ae