Saudi smartphone penetration exceeds global average

Saudi Arabia has more than 44 million mobile phone subscribers and  88 percent rate of smartphone ownership, which is almost double the international average, according to the Kingdom’s Communications and Information Technology Commission (CITC).
Arab News has quoted CITC Gov. Abdul Aziz Al-Ruwais as saying, that creating an environment which attracted local and international investors and strengthened their trust was a key part of Vision 2030’s goals for the communications and information technology sector.
The deputy governor of the organisation and competition sector, Mohammed Al-Tamimi, revealed that mobile phone subscriptions during the third quarter of 2017 reached 44.04 million, 75 percent of which represented prepaid subscriptions (33 million subscribers), and 25 percent of which were post-paid subscriptions. This showed that the prevalence of mobile phones was very high with a rate of 138.7 percent.
Al-Tamimi told Arab News that the prevalence of smartphones in the Kingdom had reached 88 percent, which is a relatively high compared to the international average of 45 percent.
He said that up until the end of 2016 the number of Internet users had reached 24 million, with a prevalence of 74 percent. The international connection capacity average in 2016 was raised to about 3,185 gigabytes per second, up from 1,484 gigabytes per second in 2015, he said.
Al-Tamimi said that the CITC had taken three main initiatives. The first was organising the market and promoting competition by overseeing controls to mitigate spam messages and by promoting transparency, clarity and the policy of fair use.
The second focused on promoting infrastructure and enabling technology by deploying broadband services, and through infrastructure and participation. The third initiative focused on protecting users by updating the regulations that looked after users’ rights and launching an index to classify service providers.
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