Established in 2014 in Saudi Arabia, Virgin Mobile turns out to be successful in targeting the largest mobile market in the Middle East and especially the youth. In an interview with Telecom Review, Virgin Mobile’s CEO, Fouad Halawi, talked about the company’s achievement so far, the hosting of MVNO that boosted competition and its close relationship with the young consumer.

Read more: Virgin Mobile: Elevating the customer journey experience

Transformation was the key topic of discussion when Osman Sultan, the charismatic chief executive of du (Emirates Integrated Telecommunications Company) spoke to Telecom Review. du is in the midst of a massive transformation to make way for a more connected and efficient future for the people of the UAE. Mr. Sultan discussed du’s important role in executing the rollout of the Smart Dubai Platform, which goes hand-in-hand with du’s commitment to cybersecurity, M2M communication, 5G, IoT and achieving Dubai’s smart city vision. Finally, Mr. Sultan touched on du’s involvement at GITEX this year, and his vision for du looking ahead.

Read more: Smarter city: Happier people

With geolocation, mobile operators can find, determine and provide the exact location of a mobile phone (user) on their network. Geolocation is used in a variety of applications like troubleshooting and analytics, and opens up a whole range of possibilities for data monetization. In an interview with Telecom Review, Vicent Soler, EVP CTO Spain - Advanced RAN Studies, Astellia, talked about the importance of geolocation and its benefits.

Read more: Astellia unlocks geolocation data for 4G and IoT

Digitization has had a profound impact on the UAE, which has proven fairly resilient to the recent economic headwinds triggered by low oil prices and weak global demand, due to its diversified economy which has embraced business opportunities and smart infrastructure. Leading the continuous digitization movement in the UAE is Etisalat Group, which over the years, has spread across 18 countries throughout the Middle East, Asia and Africa. Speaking to Telecom Review, Etisalat Group CEO Saleh Al Abdooli, touched on the phenomenal growth of digitization in the UAE and the opportunities that have emerged for Etisalat as a result. He also spoke about Etisalat at GITEX, as well as its international operations, and the importance of enhancing customer service.

Read more: Etisalat Group: Paving the way for smarter digital solutions and applications

Operators are experiencing stiff competition from new entrants and OTT players, and it significantly impacts their revenue. In addition, they are facing challenges in monetizing their data services. Launch of LTE services requires major investment in terms of license and spectrum fees, new network equipment and increased OPEX. Enhancing network performance is one key lever in the operators' toolbox to help deliver increased data throughput at a differentiated quality level to improve revenue. Enhancing the network performance is a key lever in the operators' toolbox to ensure increased data throughput and improve revenue. Telecom Review sat with Mohamed Samir, head of Services for MEA at Nokia, to unravel this thorny area, and he shared his interesting insights and Nokia's unique approaches for operators to ensure superior network performance.

Read more: Nokia delivers superior network performance to MEA operators

Looking forward to expanding on a global level while reinventing the telecom infrastructure, Nabil Haddad, CEO, IPT PowerTech, discusses with Telecom Review the company's growth, strategy and solutions that is helping in decreasing energy costs along with their future plans.

Read more: IPT PowerTech: Redefining power solutions, reinventing telecom infrastructure

"At this stage, we believe our roadmap and blueprint have covered every dimension to ensure Dubai will be a smart city across all sectors." That's what H.E. Dr. Aisha Bin Bishr, director general, Smart Dubai Office, discussed with Telecom Review in an interview about the latest Smart Dubai Office’s achievements and projects that will lead towards transforming Dubai into the happiest city in the world.

Read more: Following the vision

Telecommunication, by far, is one of the most exciting and challenging sectors with insatiable need for continuous innovation. Operators cannot afford to rest while serving superior customer experience to their users. Operators have no other option but to innovate and differentiate by creating a win-win situation for both - telco and the customer. In the growing digital era, internet has fundamentally changed the way we live, work and communicates. Nowadays, we do everything over the internet, be it ordering a burger, buying a mobile, chatting with friends, sharing videos or pictures, watching movies… the list is exhaustive.

Read more: From CSPs to DSP: Stay connected with customers digitally

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