With the exodus of expatriates during the COVID-19 pandemic, the total number of mobile subscribers fell by 8.7 per cent to 6.05mn at the end of July 2020, compared to the same period of 2019.
However, the increased uptake of Internet has led to fixed Internet subscriptions, excluding active mobile broadband subscriptions, rise by 7.8 per cent in the sultanate to touch 490,676 at the end of July 2020 vis-à-vis 2019.
Of these, fixed broadband Internet connections, which have more than 256 kilobytes speed, rose 7.9 per cent to 488,650 at the end of July 2020, according to the latest data released by the National Centre for Statistics and Information (NCSI).
The number of active mobile broadband subscribers rose 13 per cent to 4.89mn at the end of July 2020 compared to 2019 and total fixed telephone lines rose by 0.4 per cent to 582,051.
According to the NCSI report, the number of voice-over-internet protocol (VoIP) lines surged by 12.6 per cent to 219,825.
Further, analogue fixed connections fell by 7.1 per cent to 303,762 at the end of July 2020 from 307,102 subscribers in June 2020. Public payphone connections remained unchanged at 6,801, whereas ISDN channels rose by 2.5 per cent to 50,193.
The total number of mobile subscribers fell 8.7 per cent to 6.05mn at the end of July 2020. Out of these, postpaid mobile connections increased by 14.2 per cent to 852,255, and pre-paid mobile connections fell 11.6 per cent to 5.20mn at the end of July 2020.
Also, the number of subscribers of resellers rose by 9.6 per cent to 990,968 at the end of July 2020 vis-à-vis July 2019.