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Corporate | March 8, 2023

Ooredoo in the Spotlight at Mobile World Congress 2023, Shares FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022TM Learnings with Industry in Mobile World Live’s Top of the Table Webinar

Doha, Qatar

Following a report published by industry expert GSMA Intelligence (GSMAi) analysing the phenomenal telecommunications success of FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™, Ooredoo Qatar was hosted by Mobile World Live at their studios in Barcelona in an exclusive webinar during Mobile World Congress 2023.
With FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ spanning 64 matches across 8 stadiums, the report described the tournament as the ultimate opportunity to truly test the power and potential of 5G, setting new benchmarks that will shape future 5G-enabled events.

Top of the Table: How the 2022 world Cup set a new peak in mobile data traffic webinar was held on Day 2 of MWC, with Thani Al Malki, Chief Business Officer at Ooredoo Qatar, representing the telco leader, alongside Tim Hatt – Head of Research and Consulting at GSMAi – and Jean Lawrence, Vice President of Marketing and Communications, Cloud and Network Services at Nokia.

Thani Al Malki said: “We were excited to join this webinar and share insights into our experience at FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™. For us, the event itself was a showcase of how powerful the network is, of the power of 5G, and for what it can bring for consumers; and the webinar was an opportunity for us to look at how we’re going to apply what we’ve learnt from this experience in future events, and share our learnings with the industry.”

The webinar participants discussed the phenomenal data traffic witnessed at the tournament, and examined the role of 5G in managing this traffic to ensure a seamless experience for fans.

Tim Hatt said: “This event was a really interesting case study for what 5G can do, with the highest grossing data traffic of all time for sports. This was the first World Cup where 5G was installed to be the baseline communications infrastructure; it was a key test for how 5G would perform, and 5G absolutely passed that and then some. The building blocks were there, but this World Cup took it to a whole new level. Ooredoo and Nokia have shown a really good template of how to do such an event on a really big scale.”

With the report documenting the phenomenal network performance seen at FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™, Jean Lawrence highlighted the role Nokia’s partnership with Ooredoo played in the event. She said: “We worked with Ooredoo for years in advance to lay the groundwork with our cloud-native core, and tested it extensively. Under extreme strain, the network performed very well; we saw page load times of under two seconds, video start times of under two seconds. [This event was] a really compelling example of what you can make possible.”

Consumer behaviour and perception was also a topic on the table. With Tim Hatt noting that a majority of consumers around the world still see 5G as merely a speed upgrade, and not yet as a driver of fundamental new possibilities, the panellists discussed how the World Cup acted as an ideal example of just what is possible with 5G, and what will be possible in the future; a factor all agreed was a crucial element in increasing uptake of the technology. Examples noted in the GSMAi report include super-high-definition video and AR-type applications in live sporting venues, and fans accessing apps for real-time analytics and player information.

Looking to the future, the webinar panellists were in agreement that FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ has indeed set a benchmark for future 5G-enabled events, and that possibilities at such events will be endless: tickets with holograms; all kinds of futuristic video and audio technologies; vastly enhanced connected stadiums; augmented reality enhancing key moments such as penalty shoot-outs.

Thani Al Malki concluded: “As we move towards the next World Cup in 2026 in the USA, I think we will see a lot more technology involved, and in a very experiential way. We might even predict, using analytics and AI, the outcomes of the games before match day!”