5G will become the leading mobile technology in 2023 in Qatar and will account for a 64.9% share of total mobile subscriptions by 2025, supported by telcos promoting 5G plans with unique benefits and continued expansion of 5G networks. By the end of Q2 2020, Ooredoo announced that 5G postpaid customers on the Shahry and Qatarna mobile plans have exceeded the 200,000 mark.
To sustain and support 5G subscriber growth, Ooredoo has developed a 5G network expansion strategy and is partnering with major OTT video providers to increase its value proposition. Also, Ooredoo is running exclusive promotional schemes on postpaid 5G packages with added benefits to attract customers.
Promotional schemes help sell 5G
In one of the promotional schemes, the operator is offering free subscriptions to OTT platforms such as Netflix and double data allowance as part of the monthly mobile plan. For example, the Shahry 5G – L plan, is inclusive of 14GB of data along with an additional allowance of 14GB, 1,000 voice minutes, unlimited SMS and free subscription to selected OTT video platforms such as Netflix, beIN CONNECT, and OSN for a selected number of months, at a price of QAR220 (US$60.40)/month.
Ooredoo has competition from Vodafone
To compete with Ooredoo, Vodafone is promoting a variety of 5G data-centric packages, for instance, Vodafone offers the 5G ‘Unlimited 300’ plan with unlimited calls, SMS, and data for QAR250 (US$68.70) per month for the first four months and then QAR300 (US$82.40) per month for the rest of the contracted period.
The operator is also offering daily, weekly, and monthly unlimited add-on data boosters for customers, respectively, to meet the rising demand for high-speed data services. Moreover, the operator is planning to expand its nationwide presence in the 5G market by 2022. Also, in April 2020, the operator successfully launched VoLTE services to offer enhanced user experience with improved voice services.
Ooredoo and Vodafone use a similar 5G consumer tariff monetization model, where they apply different speed throttling tiers for different consumption thresholds on their unlimited 5G mobile data plans – i.e., after consuming a specific amount of data, the speed will be lowered; the more premium the plan is, the higher the consumption threshold and throttling speeds are. Ooredoo further differentiates by offering a free OTT video subscription.