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Breaking the du-opoly

Breaking the du-opoly

Broadband is up to fourteen times more expensive in the UAE compared with other markets. But an expected price war between telcos Etisalat and du could save consumers serious money.

January 26, 2010 1:57 by

How UAE broadband rates compare with those in India, the UK and US

Monthly broadband fees (AED) Etisalat (1) du (2) Airtel,  India (3) o2, UK (8) Verizon, US
30Mbps 699 n/a n/a n/a 459
24Mbps n/a 749 n/a n/a 257
20Mbps n/a n/a n/a 89 257
16Mbps 549 549 n/a 89 257
8Mbps 499 449 237 (4) 75 202
4Mbps 449 n/a n/a 75 202
2Mbps 349 349 158 (5) 75 165
1Mbps 249 249 111 (6) 75 129
512kps 189 189 79 (7) 75 129
256kps 149 149 59 75 129

(1) Plus installation charges of AED200, or AED100 when applying through website
(2) Plus installation charges of AED200
(3) For connection in Mumbai. Includes AED47-AED79 free calls.
(4) Data transfer limit of 50 GB.
(5) Speed is 2Mbps until 30GB data download limit, 1Mbps thereafter
(6) Speed is 1Mbps until 25GB data download limit, 512kbps thereafter
(7) Speed is 512Kbps until 15GB data download limit, 256Kbps thereafter
(8) Speed depends on area. Connections of ‘up to’ 8Mbps cost AED75 per month. o2 offers two months’ free internet, and a monthly discounted rate of AED45 a month to its mobile phone customers.

NEXT PAGE: A non-competitive du-opoly: UAE telcos’ current pricing

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  1. AmirAce on January 26, 2010 3:25 pm

    The prices of UAE telecom are ridiculous. Unfortunately we cannot do anything about it. Instead of protecting consumers interest TRA was formed to protect Etisalat’s revenues.

    I believe Etisalat makes around AED1.5 billion per quarter in profits. Introduction of DU has done nothing.

  2. TonyV on January 27, 2010 8:09 am

    Nothing will change. All that will happen is Etisilat and DU will sit down together and agree a price for all their broadband prices and charges. This changes nothing.
    What needs to happen is for more international companies being allowed into the UAE to compete on an ‘equal playing field’, which will create more competition and therefore benefit the consumer as well as the companies in question. This is why Broadband charges are so reasonable in the UK. However, alas this is of course is a ‘pipe dream’.

  3. Loree on January 27, 2010 11:46 am

    Businesses in Dubai Media City are basically held hostage to DU in terms of rates and services — it is even worse that the du-opoly outside the freezones because you cannot even switch between DU and Etisalat in Dubai Media City freezone. Here, it is a DU-monopoly.

  4. Sam Dubai on January 27, 2010 2:04 pm

    I think that DU uses the Etislat network so I doubt they would undercut DU’s pricing.

    keep dreaming.

  5. Lance Voix on January 28, 2010 11:13 am

    Its Incredible, du actually built the infrastructure in the marina and emirats living to provide 100mpbs to subscribers, back in 2002 but due to the lack of competition the prices were set the same as Etisalats and most people are only getting 512 or a 1meg, because they can’t justify spending any more. Also, its odd that over 7 years the prices have not even slightly reduced.

    Its high time the TRA did its job properly and worked for the consumers and not the operators. There is still no free competition on the fixed side. I tought that the WTO set dwon ruling that te U.A.E must liberalise its market, seems like the WTO has been fooled.

  6. Jola Chudy on March 4, 2010 7:25 am

    One problem is that many areas are serviced by either one or the other provider, but not both. For example, in Old Town, the only option is to get Du, so even if prices were lowered, many consumers would still not have a choice. I think the only way that’s going to happen is if private telecoms companies are allowed to enter the market.


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