Industry Thought Leadership

Mobile Technology: A Societal Boon

August, 2021


Let’s time travel. Not too much into the past. Maybe to just around two decades ago. Now let’s recollect how we functioned then – what were the ways in which we transacted, studied, worked, enjoyed our leisure, or ran our businesses and homes.

It was during this time that mobile technology began percolating into the lives of common people, drop by drop. The 2G in mobile telephony was the first drop which created ripples that came to change every aspect of humankind’s future evolution. Mobile phones combined with the power of internet created a potent mix we cannot imagine our lives without. Mobile technology had existed, but it is its application in daily life that has really earned it recognition among the masses. Cynicism, as they say, always precedes first-hand experience.

Now, back to 2021. We are already in the age of 5G, surrounded by mobile technology - using it from the moment we wake up each morning till the time we retire for the night. We have witnessed three generations of mobile technology in less than two decades.

We carry our work, education, entertainment with us – it’s mobile, and no longer restricted to offices, classrooms, halls or shops. Mobile technology has liberated society by adding flexibility, convenience and providing round the clock access to whatever we need.

We are no longer time-bound, geographically restricted, inhibited by distance, or worried about slow response time. Mobile technology has changed society for good, and how!

It has touched the lives not just of urban dwellers, but in hinterlands too, with its application being as versatile as the needs of a society itself. A 2020 survey shows that more than 95% of the Sultanate’s population has access to the internet, owns mobile phones, uses social media, computers, and smart devices. This is proof enough of how mobile technology has become a way of life, since Omantel introduced it for the first time, developed it and upgraded it to reach new levels to make life easier to everyone especially during the pandemic.

The power is all in our palms with devices that are becoming more intelligent by the day. While one may argue the downside of such technologies like say, screen addiction, but the benefits far outweigh the perceived disadvantages. This is evident from the fact that, with the emergence of new techs, the ICT world also offers a shield of protection, gives users the power to use their discretion and protect their online data.

The world has shrunk, thanks to mobile technology. We do not need fixed lines to connect any more. Communication is instant and quick. Speed offered by mobile technology has brought people and societies together, created a generation that is highly aware of global developments, sensitised businesses to the needs of their clients and helped them respond quicker and better, improved government administration, revolutionised banking and the way we handle money, brought education to our homes, notched up defence and security capabilities of nations, made navigation easier. These examples just touch the surface. If we were to elaborate, the list would be an unending one.

Global case studies point towards a three-time increase in productivity when technologies are deployed in combinations of AI, machine learning, edge computing, quantum computing, blockchain, big data analytics, and 5G.

The COVID-19 pandemic has truly highlighted the real potential of mobile technology, which until then although used, hadn’t received it due recognition – more so because its application has become so deeply embedded in our lives that we fail to identify it a separate power. It is now an extension of ourselves.

Virtual healthcare with robotic surgeries, distance learning, online shopping, remote working, cinema experience in our living rooms, quick and efficient business operations, quick disaster mitigation using GPS, more stringent HSSE protocols, are all the result of mobile technology.

Omantel, way before COVID-19 impacted economies, was pushing the boundaries of frontier technologies and playing a major role in the national digital transformation strategy that aims to create a sustainable knowledge-based society, raise the productivity and efficiency of the public and private sectors by building national capacities, strengthen the infrastructure, develop the IT industry and improve the quality and execution of government services.

COVID-19 unexpectedly impacted business processes, personal communications, access to data, learning, transportation, retail and much more. Technologies such as cloud, virtual conferencing, IoT and 5G which were in their pilot stages, became mainstream, nearly overnight. As the shift arrived, businesses across sectors were required to realign their strategies and operations. Consumers are acknowledging the benefits as they are translating into profits, growth and innovation.

Omantel mobile App acts as the Company’s virtual outlet enabling customers not only to view and pay their services but rather to subscribe to new services, amend their existing plans, request the delivery of Omantel products to their doorsteps. Omantel Mobile App played a significant role in serving Omantel customers since the start of COVID-19 especially with the introduction of the built-in AI enabled chatbot “Noor”.

On the other hand, Omantel has responded rapidly to new emerging market demands, and has outperformed many players by shrinking the time an ICT innovation takes to reach its practical application for individuals as well as enterprises in the Sultanate.

Every vital sector that drives economies is evolving and embracing mobile technology in its latest avatar, and Omantel is committed to make it happen.