Sunday, 15 March 2009

New Mobile Service Providers in Oman

Last year about 6 businesses were awarded Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO) licenses by TRA Oman. We can debate about having so many mobile telephony service providers in Oman, a country with about 3 million people, but I think we just better wait and see how this goes.

There are rumors around already about a couple of these virtual operators having second thoughts, but again, they are just rumors.

Among these operators, FRiENDi Mobile and Renna Mobile (Majan Telecom) have already started marketing and are expected to start full operations anytime. On the contrary, Injaz Telecom and Mazoon Mobile are yet to make their presence felt.

Looking at their websites, it seems Mazoon will target young Omanis. This is not a bad idea, specially since about 50% of Omanis are students. FRiENDi Mobile seems to target the labor class and expats in Oman. This is clear from their multilingual website, but the question is, how many of these expats would be interested in a website available in their local language. In fact, how many of them know what a website is and know how to access it? Can't say much about Injaz or Renna, but I'm sure they either have something up their sleeves, or working towards it! Let's wait and see.

New businesses are always good, but I really hope a good number of jobs are created for Omanis, otherwise its business as usual. Among these new operators, I reckon FRiENDi and Mazoon (whenever it starts) would do good.


  1. A telecom revolution is starting in Oman, the competition is getting tougher while the market is still in the initial growing phase.
    The good thing about it though is that many jobs will be available for Omani youth.
    and both companies seem promising, wish them a very good luck =)

  2. Well Faith, I agree but we need to see new services in the market. These MVNOs use the infrastructure of Nawras and Oman Mobile. So it is impossible they provide any new service.

    So we can't expect more than SMS, MMS and maybe browsing.

  3. More competition for the initial monopoly and Nawras. This is really good, since the other two providers will be working on providing good service and products, as there's more competition in the market now. No more crappy service, yay!

  4. Sariya you're right. But I wonder how flexibly will they be able to do this. Besides, what bothers me is that these companies only provide the standard mobile telephony, SMS and MMS to users.

  5. The most important thing in mobile market is good services at low price.
    As these MVNOs are using Oman mobile & Nawras network so services will remain same, & as these MVNOs paying high rates to their parent operator , so low price is too difficult for them to offer to subscriibers

  6. I completely agree Mr/Ms Anonymous. The sad part is, I don't see any of these MVNOs adding any unique and technological value to the services they provide.

    They need to bank of the evolution of ultra mobile computers and develop interactive software, content and services.

  7. I'll be travelling in Oman and would like to know if any of the local providers offer a 3G SIM card-data option for use in my HSDPA enabled netbook (Lenovo S10-2). If not, is there something in the works or do any of them provide a locked external USB modem, i.e. with a 3G SIM inside. Thanks for any input, a response to would be appreciated, but I'll check back here also.

  8. I'd suggest Oman Mobile, they provide data access (internet) in across Oman, even outside the capital.

    Their 3G coverage is very good too.

    Nawras has better offering for internet users though. Like you can buy OMR 2 (about 8 US$) credit for your prepaid SIM and use the internet for 48 hours.