Oman Telecommunications Company (Omantel), the Sultanate’s incumbent telecoms operator, plans to roll out 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) technology to provide more advanced mobile data services to its subscribers, Gulfnews.com cites Omantel’s CEO, Dr Amer Al Rawas, as saying. The executive told representatives of the media that a tender has been floated to select an LTE network supplier, but did not give a timeframe for the rollout of the 4G technology. The new service would initially support wireless data, but would also eventually support voice services. He added that Omantel invested around OMR84 million (USD218 million) in its network last year, roughly in line with the operator’s commitment to spending approximately 20% of revenues on new infrastructure; Al Rawas said network investment during 2012 would be at a similar level to the previous year. Omantel is 70%-owned by the state, with the remaining 30% held by private investors. According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, it was the country’s largest mobile operator by subscribers at the end of September 2011 with a user base of 2.207 million, giving it a market share of 53.4%. At the same date, Oman’s only other mobile network operator, Nawras, claimed 1.929 million wireless customers.
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