The Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) will soon announce a policy to provide VoIP services in the UAE through the two telecom operators Etisalat and du.
The TRA also hopes to launch mobile number portability (MNP) facility which allows the customers to shift the mobile telephone services from telecom operator to another without changing the number in 2010, the media department of the TRA said here in an e-mailed response to the questions sent by Khaleej Times.
“The TRA is in the process of implementing a new VoIP policy. It is expected that this policy will be published soon, and will be made available on the TRA website. Pursuant to this new policy, customers may obtain VoIP services only through the licensees, Etisalat and du. The exception to this will be certain prescribed uses, which deal with educational and public interest purposes,” the media department’s statement said.
Pointing out that VoIP services will provide greater range of telecommunications services, the TRA said “the VoIP Services will allow more flexibility for customers, as they will be able to utilise this technology in their internal network, using converged networks and using single connections. VoIP will allow companies to integrate voice with other compatible IT components. VoIP will also allow companies to save on their running costs as IP-enabled equipment is cost-effective, and they will also only have to maintain a single infrastructure instead of two.”
Asked whether Etisalat and du are equipped to launch these services immediately upon implementation of the new policy, the TRA media official said, “we believe that this question is more properly directed to Etisalat and du.”
The TRA officials also declined to comment on the impact of the introduction of the VoIP services on the revenues of Etisalat, and du. “You may directed this question also to Etisalat and du.”
On the MNP facility, the statement said the TRA is looking forward to introduce a one stop shop for this service. Mobile subscribers wishing to change their current service provider will be able to switch by approaching the other service provider for this service. Once the formalities are concluded the subscribers will retain their mobile numbers while being served by the new service provider.