Mobile data speeds of up to 800Mbps could become a reality in Qatar following the launch of a new 4.5G Pro network, Ooredoo has announced.
The telecom provider appears to be one of the first operators in the world to roll out 4.5G.
Many other carriers, including in the US, are also racing to offer much faster internet.
In a statement this week while at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Ooredoo said the technology will boost mobile data speeds in “some of the busiest areas of Doha.”
That includes “cultural, business and tourist hubs of Doha such as the Doha Corniche, Katara, West Bay area and The Pearl,” it added.
800 Mpbs would be a considerable improvement. The current fastest speeds offered by Ooredoo are 325 Mbps on 4G+, according to its website.
However, only a limited number of consumers have access to such speeds. Most people use the 4G network, which runs at about only 12Mbps.
The 4.5G rollout follows successful testing of the network in December.
At the time, Ooredoo Qatar CEO Waleed Al Sayed said “The current joint achievement is a milestone, and puts us on the evolutionary path toward launching 5G networks in the future.”
Ooredoo and partner Nokia had also pledged to offer speeds as high as 1 Gbps by early 2017.
Officials now say this will be “made available later this year.”
Phones that can actually support a 4.5 network will also go on sale sometime in 2017, Ooredoo said.
Fixed line speed
Ooredoo also recently introduced households in Qatar to some of the fastest internet speeds in the world.
Last year, it rolled out 1Gbps fiber service, a huge boost from the 300 Mbps it offered previously. The new speed would allow a user to download a two-hour HD movie in two minutes.
However, the service remains pricey, costing some QR1,900/month ($522).
Are you excited about 4.5G? Thoughts?