Nicolas Blixell, Vice President and Head of Ericsson Gulf Council Countries
In 1973, Ericsson signed the first telecom contract in the country. Under the terms of the milestone agreement, Ericsson developed Oman’s first national telephone infrastructure network that brought connectivity to the country’s population. Ericsson established telephone facilities across the country that comprised 23 automatic exchanges and 12,000 lines.
Over the years, Ericsson has provided groundbreaking telecommunications services to Oman, including the first public mobile automatic telephone system (PMATS) in 1984. It has also delivered several joint projects with the country’s operators, including pioneering success stories that have served as global references. A trailblazer in launching new-generation mobile technologies, Ericsson introduced 4G service in Oman in 2012, followed by 5G in 2020.
Today, Oman is driven by aspirations to leverage innovation and shared learning to build a better life for its people, with digital transformation forming a key part of Oman Vision 2040. The country’s highly skilled workforce and dedication to world-class innovation continue to make it one of the most attractive business environments for tech.
To support the government’s ambitions, Ericsson is assisting service providers in Oman in evolving their consumer propositions through its leading technology, global industry insights and a collaborative approach to business development. This way, Ericsson is aspiring to contribute to strengthening the country’s ICT infrastructure capabilities to meet the growing demand from individuals and businesses.
By utilizing the innovative Ericsson Spectrum Sharing and other state-of-the-art Ericsson Radio System products, Ericsson is offering coverage to a vast majority of Oman's geography while maintaining exceptional energy efficiency. Ericsson has successfully deployed and operated a cutting-edge greenfield network in Oman, featuring advanced 2G/4G, and 5G core and radio access technology. With a focus on the deployment of 5G network technology, Ericsson is using its revolutionary Massive MIMO solutions to power Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) stories. Additionally, Ericsson is providing invaluable support to local telecom partners in the form of migrating and consolidating online charging systems and mediation, enhancing the digital experience for customers.
By supporting the development of highly efficient and reliable standalone networks, Ericsson is paving the way for high-quality, seamless voice and data services that meet the evolving needs of customers. Recently, Ericsson achieved a significant milestone by completing a successful Voice over New Radio (VoNR) proof of concept call over a standalone 5G network in collaboration with a trusted partner. This breakthrough will help pave the way for the commercial introduction of 5G standalone voice and data services for residents in the Sultanate.
Ericsson's commitment to Oman extends beyond its network deployment and digital transformation efforts. Ericsson also proactively works to help close the science and technology knowledge gap in Oman in line with the performance indicators of Oman 2040 Vision. Offering on-the-job, project-based, online, and classroom learning, Ericsson's graduate program in Oman provides young talent with opportunities to work with cutting-edge technologies like 5G, IoT, cloud technology, and data centers.
Ericsson partnered with the Ministry of Finance to establish the Center of Excellence for Advanced Telecommunications Technology and IoT (CoE) in Innovation Park Muscat (IPM). As part of the Oman Tawazun (Offset) Program, which seeks to diversify the country’s economy by investing in projects that serve its strategic objectives, the CoE facilitates the development and deployment of 5G and Internet of Things (IoT) solutions. At the Center, Ericsson offers technological support and oversees training programs that include workshops, specialized professional courses and mentorships, targeting employees of telecommunications, commercial and industrial entities as well as university students, researchers, and innovators. In addition, it assists with research projects on 5G and IoT applications.
Ericsson also mentors Sultan Qaboos University students in 5G and IoT technology while providing international learning experiences through the New York Academy of Sciences and Oman's Ministry of Higher Education, Research, and Innovation (MoHERI) with the Academy Innovation Challenge. Ericsson also offers digital learning licenses for students above 17 and supplies the necessary tools for the CoE to run digital skills teaching programs for kids in collaboration with Pluralsight and MoHERI.
Ericsson is also focused on supporting “Omanization” and generating employment opportunities. By boosting its local delivery capabilities, Ericsson will help meet Oman's connectivity targets and contribute to strengthening the country's ICT infrastructure capabilities. Ericsson's graduate program will aid in Omanization by providing valuable work experience, skills, and knowledge to Oman's young talent, enabling them to advance their careers and become part of a highly skilled workforce that continues to make Oman one of the most attractive business environments for tech.
Ericsson is committed to playing an active role in building Oman’s digital future. Using its advanced technology and expertise, Ericsson aspires to create new job opportunities, kickstart the digital economy and provide a platform for unparalleled innovation. As Oman moves towards its vision of 2040, Ericsson will remain a reliable partner for the government and the private sector, providing cutting-edge technology and solutions that will help to achieve the country's digital aspirations.