Comms MEA - - Commsmea Awards 2018 Update -

It takes a lot, of course, to im­press the judges and stand out from the fierce com­pe­ti­tion. A great team. Grit. De­ter­mi­na­tion. In­ge­nu­ity. Per­se­ver­ance. But also that “I” word: in­no­va­tion.

One thing ev­ery win­ning en­try from last year has in com­mon is that they were all in­no­va­tive so­lu­tions. Take, for in­stance, the field from the Most In­no­va­tive New Ser­vice of the Year in the 2017 edi­tion of the awards. Nokia and Zain Saudi MEC Project won highly com­mended for two smart ser­vices that were lunched dur­ing the Hajj sea­son in 2016, which help pil­grims more eas­ily nav­i­gate the mas­sive crowds and iden­tify when might be the best time to per­form holy rit­u­als. Vir­gin Mo­bile UAE-EITC nabbed the top prize for cre­at­ing the world’s first fully dig­i­tal mo­bile busi­ness unit and value propo­si­tion for the United Arab Emi­rates. Com­pletely app-based, it al­lows cus­tomers to reg­is­ter and get their SIM ac­ti­vated wher­ever they are, with no need to visit a store.

Then there’s what STC did to win Mid­dle East Tele­com Op­er­a­tor of the Year. Judges were par­tic­u­larly im­pressed by how the telco es­tab­lished a tech­nol­ogy ven­ture cap­i­tal fund with an ini­tial in­vest­ment value of $500 mil­lion.

And what did Eti­salat do to win Tele­com Group of the Year? Noth­ing other than be­com­ing the first group in the MENA re­gion to con­duct suc­cess­ful 5G tri­als, and also be­com­ing the first op­er­a­tor in the Mid­dle East and North Africa to in­tro­duce In­ter­net of Things so­lu­tions for the mass con­nec­tiv­ity of var­i­ous ma­chines and de­vices.

The point be­ing is this: in­no­va­tion wins. And in the case of the Comms MEA Awards, that should be taken lit­er­ally.

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