Telcos

Published on April 9th, 2013 | by The TechView Team

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TRA says Skype still not authorized in UAE

The TRA has issued a statement saying there has been no change to the policy where VoIP services can only be provided by licensees – du and Etisalat – and that ‘VoIP services through Skype are still unauthorized’. RTA adds that provision of VOIP services are a regulated activity and that the licensees need explicit approval from the authority.

Earlier this week, Etisalat posted a message on Facebook saying that the Skype website had been blocked and could not be accessed. This meant users on the Etisalat network could download Skype and buy credit, which they could not have done earlier. Users on the du network however have been able to do this for a while now. This has led to some confusion with many believing that Skype is finally and completely unblocked in the UAE. However users are still unable to dial out to mobiles and landlines when connected to the Etisalat network. On the du network, however users can dial out with no issues. PC to PC calls continue to function without any issues.

VoIP has always been sketchy at best in the UAE. Services like Viber and Tango, which allow phone to phone calls via apps on mobiles, have been blocked too. In addition, most SIP services don’t function either as the default ports have been blocked.

For now, it would seem the situation and policy around VoIP remains unchanged.

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