Next week the Middle East mobile community will gather for Gitex Technology Week. As well as hosting MEF Connects Dubai on 22nd October, MEF is supporting the GSMA’s first ever Mobile 360 Series event to be held in Dubai. Here, Chief Marketing Officer Michael O’Hara explains what delegates can expect from the event and how it will help unlock the potential of the exciting Middle East market.
It’s now less than a week until the GSMA will host its first Mobile 360-Middle East event in Dubai (21-22 October). Mobile 360-Middle East has been designed to reflect the specific interests and concerns of mobile operators and other ecosystem players in the Middle East and North Africa. We believe this focused approach will provide a view into the latest technological developments, market opportunities and next-generation services shaping mobile communications in the region, which is one of the fastest growing markets globally.
Mobile is unlike any other technology in its ability to transform the way people communicate and to positively impact the economies and societies they live in. It is an enabling technology whose real power is in letting people across the economy conduct their business efficiently and with a ubiquity that is unique. Globally, there are approximately 7 billion mobile connections, representing 3.3 billion individual subscribers.
In the Arab States, over the last ten years, mobile connections have increased at an average annual rate of 32 per cent, from 19 million in 2002 to 391 million in 2012. This dramatic advance of mobile in the Arab States is not only transforming access to information and services, but is also acting as a fundamental driver of economic growth.
For instance, in 2011 alone, the mobile industry contributed US $54 billion to the economies of the Arab States and accounted for 1.2 million full-time jobs. Mobile services are providing broad foundation for employment, social development and productivity growth across the region.
Here in the Middle East, two of the biggest priorities for the mobile industry lie in increasing spectrum availability and providing a stable regulatory environment, both of which are key to continuing the momentum of mobile in the region.
Mobile 360-Middle East will afford attendees the unique opportunity to hear perspectives and keen insights from CEOs, senior executives and subject matter experts on these issues and also share experiences and learnings with colleagues.
The Mobile 360-Middle East programme features the CEOs of leading operators including Du, Etisalat and Ooredoo, as well as senior executives from companies such as Dropbox, Ericsson, Huawei, MasterCard, NEC and Qualcomm, among others. We hope to see you there!