Expo 2020 deal with Etisalat makes it first 5G customer in MidEast

Expo 2020 deal with Etisalat makes it first 5G customer in MidEast
The Dubai Expo 2020 site will cover 438 hectares.
Published: 10 July 2018 - 6:39 a.m.
By: Digital Studio Middle East Staff

The UAE has set another benchmark for the early adoption of advanced new technology, with Expo 2020 Dubai becoming the first major commercial customer in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia (MEASA) region to access 5G services, through its partnership with Etisalat.

Etisalat connected Expo 2020 Dubai to its 5G network, making the site of the next World Expo the first commercial location in the MEASA region to experience 5G connectivity. The milestone reinforces the reputation of both UAE and Dubai as leaders in innovation and infrastructure.

At around 20 times faster than 4G and with ultra-low latency, 5G technology will enable users to stream live 4K resolution video anywhere at any time, with virtually no lag.

Etisalat’s network will provide the most advanced digital and telecom services to Expo 2020 Dubai and its millions of visitors, supporting an expected 300,000 users on peak days.

It will be a key component of the Expo 2020 ‘smart site’, that will deliver a unique and memorable experience for the millions of visitors and 200 participants.

Mohammed Alhashmi, Senior Vice President, Innovation and Future Technology at Expo 2020 Dubai, said: “Becoming the first major 5G commercial customer in the MEASA region is a major milestone for UAE and Dubai, and supports Expo 2020’s goal to be one of the most connected places on Earth, both physically and virtually.

“At Expo 2020 we plan to optimise every visitor’s experience by digitally connecting them with their surrounding environment and enriching their interactions throughout the Expo journey. Etisalat’s 5G network will play a significant role in supporting this overall goal and providing a seamless digital experience to all visitors.”

The introduction of the new technology takes forward the ‘Smart Dubai’ vision of a digital and interconnected city and provides further impetus to its aspirations to be the world’s smartest city.

Saeed Al Zarouni, Senior Vice President, Mobile Network at Etisalat, said: “Today’s announcement is significant, with Etisalat setting a global benchmark that supports UAE’s 2021 Vision, which identifies digital technology as one of the top seven primary national sectors.

“Our ability to provide 5G services to Expo 2020 is only possible due to our commitment to invest in line with our strategy to ‘Drive the Digital future to empower the society’ with solutions and services that are at the forefront of the digital journey.”

International standardisation of 5G parameters is expected to be announced later this year. 5G is anticipated to support advancements in applications such as networking vehicles, including autonomous driving, the Internet of Things (IoT) and industrial automation.

As Expo 2020 Dubai’s Official Telecommunications Partner and Official Digital Services Partner, Etisalat’s 5G network will help attract top tier companies to District 2020, the mixed purpose development that will carry on Expo 2020’s legacy as a place to connect, create and innovate.

Expo 2020 will run from 20 October, 2020 to 10 April, 2021 and expects to attract 25 million visits. About 70 per cent of visitors are expected to come from outside the UAE, the largest proportion in the 167-year history of World Expos.

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