Saudi Arabian telecoms operator Etihad Etisalat (Mobily) has extended its fibre-optic network to the cities of Jazan, Unaizah and Al Hofuf, thus bringing the total number of cities served to 20. According to the Saudi Gazette, the telco is aiming to cover more than one million residential units with its fibre network by the end of the year. Mobily’s chief operating officer Nasser Al Nasser commented: ‘Mobily is in a race against time for the deployment of a fibre-optic network in all regions of the Kingdom; we work in accordance with a technical plan that took into account the speed of implementation and the quality of provided service.’
According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, in June 2011 Mobily awarded contracts worth SAR400 million (USD106 million) to install metropolitan fibre-optic networks in four different cities; more than 70,000 households in Riyadh, Jeddah, Dammam and Al-Khobar were covered under the first phase of the project, with the operator rolling out around 4,000km of fibre. By end-June 2014 the company had connected more than 850,000 residential units with fibre.