With social distancing and ‘work and learn from home’ being the new way of life, more people have been confined to their homes. This has resulted in a sudden spike in the uptake of internet, both fixed and broadband, services in the sultanate.
Oman’s total internet subscriptions, excluding active mobile subscriptions, rose by 11.2% to touch 491,985 until the end of April, compared to 442,572 in April 2019.
Fixed broadband internet subscriptions, which have more than 256 kilobytes speed, increased by 11.3% to reach 489,961 until the end of April 2020, according to the latest data released by National Centre for Statistics and Information (NCSI).
The number of active mobile broadband subscriptions shot up by 27.1% to 5.25 million until the end of April 2020, compared to 4.13 million subscriptions in April 2019. Total fixed telephone lines subscriptions rose by 2.7% to 588,925 until the end of April 2020, against 573,188 subscriptions in April 2019.
According to the NCSI report, the number of voice-over-internet protocol (VoIP) lines surged by 13.6% to 215,873, compared to 190,019 subscriptions in April 2019. Furthermore, analogue fixed connections fell 3.6% to 314,314 from 326,184 subscriptions in April 2019.
Public payphone connections remained unchanged at 6,801, whereas ISDN channels rose by 3.8% to 50,364.
The total number of mobile subscriptions fell by 5.5% to 6.23 million until the end of April 2020, compared to 6.59 million subscriptions in April 2019.
Out of this, postpaid mobile increased by 11.7% to 816,585 from 731,265 subscribers in April 2019 and pre-paid mobile connections fell by 7.6% to 5.41 million, compared to 5.86 million in April 2019.