Muscat's Internet be better than Verizon in Manhattan. Omantel began deploying fiber in 2015. Like Chunghwa and Net Cologne, they are now terminating that fiber in the basement and using the existing copper wires for G.fast. Speeds today will be 500-800 megabits. Soon, perhaps next years, the 212 MHz chips will become available and offer something like 1.4 gigabits.
80% of Omanis are urban, many living in apartment buildings that are natural for G.fast. The population is generally young and well-educated, with a majority going to college. 75% of the population use the Internet.
I don't have data for Oman, but neighboring Saudi Arabia "has the highest penetration of Twitter users in the world, and their per-capita consumption of YouTube is the highest in the world." 56% in the UAE have active social media accounts. The demand is there.
The company is under pressure to improve services. A third mobile operator will soon join Omantel and Ooredoo, increasing competition. The regulator is also pressing for a better Internet, as Oman builds an economy less dependent on dwindling oil revenues.
The press release contains the interesting tidbit, "G.fast sites can also serve up to 96 lines." Until recently, Huawei's maximum was 16 ports. BT & Swisscom told me in Paris they have working 48 and 96 port units in the labs. I guessed they were Huawei despite no official confirmation.
Verizon can't deliver more than 3 megabit DSL to me, as they welched on their "All New York by 2014 fiber" promise.
Photos by Jhong Dizon & Aravind Sivaraj
Huawei and Omantel to Deploy Middle East’s First G.fast
Omantel, the first and leading integrated telecommunications services provider in Oman, has abundant copper resources in its existing network. To meet growing subscriber demand for digital home services and high-definition video Omantel aims to reconstruct its live networks to achieve broadband acceleration. By 2020, the company plans to cover 90% of home subscribers in Muscat, Oman’s capital. In high-value areas it plans to provide 200 Mb/s to 1 Gb/s for high density buildings to provide users with higher bandwidth and an enhanced experience. Omantel is targeting a solution that provides faster access, faster deployment, and yields a faster return on investment.
Huawei proposed the E2E G.fast solution that employs optical line terminal (OLT), G.fast distributed point unit (DPU), and G.fast customer-premises equipment (CPE) to help Omantel meet its goals. Field tests show G.fast can achieve 800 Mb/s and 400 Mb/s at loops of 100m and 300m, respectively. This reflects much greater performance than ADSL2+ and VDSL2. Omantel will deploy G.fast in the basements of tall buildings, where the existing copper infrastructure, such as telephone lines, will be reused to deliver ultra-broadband access. This avoids the need for construction inside houses, which may involve drilling holes and open wiring, thus simplifying delivery, saving on cost, and reducing customer complaints. Large-capacity G.fast sites can also serve up to 96 lines, which significantly reduces per-subscriber cost.
In addition, Omantel will deploy the high-performance G.fast home gateway, which will provide subscribers with an improved experience for voice, data, video services, and dual-band gigabit Wi-Fi services.
"G.fast technology brings copper access into the gigabit era by delivering fiber-like speeds, which makes it possible for us to improve the experience for more customers using old copper lines and thus making the most of our existing copper network," said bin Abdullah Al Ajmi, VP Operations at Omantel.
"We look forward to continuing the partnership with Omantel through the commercial G.fast deployment,” said Leo Hong, Huawei’s Oman CEO. “Huawei’s investment and innovation in the end-to-end large capacity G.fast solution will significantly help Omantel accelerate the rollout of ultrafast broadband and achieve business success.".
Copper is an important infrastructure for fixed network operators and G.fast technology unleashes copper’s potential, helping operators make the most of existing resources to speed up ultra-broadband network deployment. Huawei, as the leading fixed access network solution provider, is committed to providing operators with future-oriented ultra broadband solutions. Huawei has made significant contributions to the formulation of the G.fast standards. After a multi-year R&D investment and cooperation with top industry players, Huawei has begun to release a series of G.fast products. These products support the industry's largest service capacity, smart and secure reversed power over Ethernet (PoE), remote power supply (RPS), as well as IP68 protection. To date, Huawei and more than 20 operators have carried out G.fast deployment and tests. G.fast has also been commercially deployed in counties such as UK, Switzerland, Germany, and Canada.