No can Du: Etisalat sharing bitstream with rival causes hiccups

8 Dec 2010

Technical problems have delayed the rollout of wholesale bitstream broadband internet access and mobile number portability (MNP) in the UAE, according to Mohamed al Ghanim, director general of the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA), as reported by local newspaper The National. Incumbent Etisalat’s planned offering of bitstream access to rival Du has been pushed back to next year, as Mr al Ghanim said that technical issues with providing bitstream over direct fibre-optic broadband connections were still being resolved. Nationwide mobile operator Du’s internet and pay-TV services currently only cover a small area of Dubai including Dubai Marina and Media City. Mr al Ghanim said a trial bitstream service with selected customers would start early next year. Meanwhile, he said MNP is being delayed for similar reasons, claiming: ‘As soon as we make sure the process works, it will come out. But the system is ready.’