Ooredoo CEO Outlines Telco Leader’s Delivery of World-First 5G FIFA World Cup™ on Qatar TV’s ‘Pulse of The Economy’ Show
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Ooredoo – Official Middle East & Africa Telecommunications Operator of FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ – has confirmed its full readiness to host millions of football fans and visitors at next month’s mega-event.
Sheikh Mohammed Bin Abdulla Al Thani, CEO at Ooredoo, outlined preparations for the world’s biggest sporting event during an interview aired on Qatar TV’s ‘Pulse of The Economy’ show on Tuesday 25 October 2022.
Sheikh Mohammed reviewed the company’s plans to meet the huge demand for telecommunications services, both before and during the tournament, and the steps it has taken to ensure a distinctive, enhanced experience for all attending the event.
During the interview, Sheikh Mohammed highlighted that the 2022 edition of the FIFA World Cup™ will be the first tournament that will see all stadiums equipped with 5G technology, ensuring a unique, completely new experience for fans that will enable them to seamlessly share the atmosphere with friends, loved ones and followers around the world.
Ooredoo’s CEO stressed that all eight World Cup stadiums will be equipped with a mobile network service featuring the latest communications technologies, in addition to TETRA wireless services and Wi-Fi.
He also noted that prior to FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™, Ooredoo modernised its external radio network locations with the latest 5G technology aimed at maximising nationwide coverage, including stadiums, airports, the metro, fan zones and other FIFA-related facilities.
A full 4G and 5G mobile network upgrade was competed, utilising the latest and most advanced equipment in preparation for the event.
The entire core network was also upgraded with the addition of the latest, most advanced core cloud network in state-of-the-art data centres. Data network node upgrades will ensure a secure margin is available in accordance with FIFA’s official data traffic requirements.
Speaking of the cooperation with FIFA, Sheikh Mohammed emphasised the longstanding relationship between the two entities, with Ooredoo acting as National Supporter of FIFA Club World Cup Qatar™ 2019 and 2020. The telco leader was also chosen to be Official Global Provider of International Connectivity Services and Official Middle East & Africa Telecommunications Operator for FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™, and selected by FIFA Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy (SC) to provide a global network link between Doha and different points of presence in Europe – London and Frankfurt – as well as Singapore in Asia.
In these roles, Ooredoo will provide global telecommunications services to all media rights licensees in Qatar to cover this landmark international event. This includes the connection of approximately 50 event broadcasters around the world to the Ooredoo network and the Qatar International Broadcasting Centre to transmit live video and data, providing tournament carriers with the quality and flexibility needed to produce and distribute broadcast video content.
Sheikh Mohammed expressed his pride at the company being chosen to support FIFA in such important roles for such a prestigious event, describing the selection as proof of the organisation’s confidence in Ooredoo to deliver strong, reliable services, and of its position as a communications company committed to innovation and technology. Sheikh Mohammed also noted Ooredoo’s commitment being evidenced in the many recent major sporting events hosted by the State of Qatar in recent years, such as the World Athletics Championships 2019, FIFA Arab Cup Qatar 2021™ and the F1 Ooredoo Qatar Grand Prix 2021.
Also discussed during the interview was the telco leader’s offering to visitors and fans during the event; the single biggest offer ever made by any telecommunications operator during a major event, with the promise of an unprecedented fan experience.
From 1 November 2022, Ooredoo’s Hayya SIM will be available to visitors, pre-loaded with 2022MB data, 2022 local minutes and 2022 SMS. Existing customers will enjoy the same offer so they can also stay connected and enjoy the festive atmosphere.
Connectivity while on the go – a key requirement for players, FIFA officials and media representatives – has not been overlooked, Sheikh Mohammed noted. More than 350 FIFA buses are being provided with mobile broadband, with some 300 of these also fitted with managed Wi-Fi systems.
Ooredoo will also be present in all fan zones, ensuring a sophisticated, powerful communications service so fans can share their experience with friends, family and followers across the globe.
Sheikh Mohammed shared that a highlight of preparations has been the official FIFA song, Arhbo, the popularity of which has exceeded all expectations; it reached more than 10 million views in just two days after its official release at the opening of Lusail Stadium, and is becoming an anthem the world over for those celebrating the tournament and its electric atmosphere.
A key element of the song, Sheikh Mohammed said, was its representation of the renowned hospitality of the Qatari people, and the country’s many important archaeological and cultural sites.