IPTV expands reach to nine Arab countries

DetailsRebecca Hawkes | 17 June 2015

IPTV is now provided by 14 telcos in nine countries across the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), with the Gulf being the leading adopter, according to the Arab Advisors Group.

Bahrain, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the UAE all now have IPTV, which is in its initial stage of penetration in the Arab world, the Amman-based research company says.

In addition, a number of international and local providers offer subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) services for viewers in MENA, such as Starz Play, icflix and Istikana.

"By April 2015, there were 14 service providers in nine countries in the Arab World offering commercial IPTV services. Bahrain had the largest number of IPTV providers with three providers available in the Kingdom. Saudi Arabia and the UAE followed with two service providers each," said Hiba Al Atiyat, senior research analyst, Arab Advisors Group.

"As broadband Internet expands in the Arab world, IPTV adoption is increasing. The competition among IPTV service providers within the same country drives its offered features into frequent upgrades, which makes the user's TV viewing experience more interactive," she added.