Network cables connected to routers (illustrative).
(photo credit: INGIMAGE)
Israel is falling behind Qatar and the United Arab Emirates in both fixed and mobile broadband adoption, according to a ranking by Ovum, a telecom research firm.
The analysis, which examined how developed broadband markets both regionally and globally, found Qatar and the UAE at the top of the Middle East region and in the top 10 globally. Out of a possible 1,000 points (500 each for fixed and mobile connectivity), they scored 682 and 681, respectively.
“The high scores and rankings achieved by the UAE and Qatar in Ovum’s Broadband Development Index reflect the impressive level of development within the telecom markets in these countries, and broadband connectivity continues to offer solid growth prospects in the Middle East,” said Matthew Reed, Practice Leader for Middle East & Africa at Ovum.
Israel, in the meantime, was ranked 19th globally, with a score of 519, ranking in third place in the Middle East.
“The UAE and Qatar score highly because of their extensive roll-outs of [fiber-based fixed] and early launches as well as strong take-up of LTE . Israel’s launch of LTE only took place fairly recently; and fixed broadband in Israel is primarily via DSL and cable,” an Ovum spokeswoman explained.
For comparison, the US and Canada were ranked 8th and 10th respectively, with scores of 669 and 612, while South Korea topped the ranking with a score of 945, followed by Singapore, Hong Kong, Japan, and Andorra.
Israel still remains far ahead of other Middle East countries included in the study, such as Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey.
Overall, however, the study expected significant growth in the Middle East’s broadband connectivity. Highspeed LTE mobile connectivity was expected to grow from the current 28.7 million users to 156.1 million by 2020 while high-speed fiber-based fixed broadband would increase from 3.8 million to 6.4 million.