UAE service providers attracted nearly 614,000 new mobile phone users through the first 11 months of 2011, boosting the total number of subscribers to 11.54 million at the end of November, and maintaining the country’s position as having of the highest GSM penetration ratios.
Official data showed both Etisalat and Du, the two mobile phone operators in the second largest Arab economy, managed to boost their subscriber base in 2011 as they pushed ahead with expansion plans in mobile phones and other telecommunications services.
The report by the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) gave no breakdown but Du said last month it expects to surpass Etisalat in mobile phone user base this year.
At 11.54 million, the UAE had a GSM penetration rate of around 144 per cent, or nearly 1.5 mobile phone for every person, one of the highest ratios in the world. The rate at the end of November was far below the 200-per cent ratio announced three years ago before the UAE massively revised up its population from just above five million to nearly eight million last year.