Over 2.4 million spectators were present at the 2022 FIFA World Cup group phase in Qatar, with a 94% occupancy rate over the eight venues that hosted the tournament in the Middle East country, a ground-breaking attendance, only the second time in history when so many people watched live the 48 matches in this phase of the tournament, after the 1994 edition, which took place in the United States of America.
Qatar made huge strides for everything to work seamlessly, as no stones were left unturned for the perfect fan experience, from the state-of-the-art stadiums to the FIFA Fan Festivals, where everybody could watch games on giant screens in an excellent environment throughout the whole of Qatar.
One unique point of sell of the Qatar 2022 tournament was the connectivity, with the buses taking the fans to the venues all equipped with Wi-Fi, as well as the stadiums themselves, offering a peak experience and excellent interconnectivity, so the visitors and locals alike not feeling they skip a beat on their phones.
According to Ooredoo, the Official Middle East & Africa Telecommunications Operator of FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022, the figures for data consumption and data usage throughout the group phase were record-breaking, but demand has been excellently and expertly met, with everything in place to cater to every need.
More than 1,130 multi-beam antennas, connecting over 355km of RF cables and over 202km of fibre optic, cover the eight stadiums and immediate surrounding areas with 4G and 5G. Mobile network services with 5,000+ cells, 1,500+ DOTs, TETRA services and Wi-Fi backbone offer state-of-the-art 5G, 4G, 3G and 2G technologies at all eight stadiums.
Some 533TB of mobile data has been used, with 136TB of Wi-Fi being used in and around the stadiums. 39.9% of data has been via Ooredoo’s pioneering 5G network at speeds of up to 240Mbps, with 58.6% on the 4G network at speeds of up to 20Mbps. 434,000 fans have used roaming while at the event, with others using tailor-made packages offered by the carrier at Qatar 2022.
Voice calls were also in huge demand, as visitors wanted to share their experience with their loved ones at home, as an incredible 7.5 million voice calls have been made, of which 62.9% were over VoLTE, with a call set-up success rate of 99.95%.
“These impressive statistics show just how well prepared we were to host such a major international tournament in Qatar. Fans attending the event have demanded superfast internet speeds, seamless connectivity and reliable voice calls, and we’ve been able to deliver all this and more to enable everyone to upgrade their worlds with a vastly enhanced fan experience,” said Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulla Al Thani, Deputy Group Chief Executive Officer and Chief Executive Officer of Ooredoo Qatar.
Everything has been well put in place before the start of the tournament, as more than 500 experts on the ground have been deployed to ensure that everything works as planned, working around the clock to ensure seamless connectivity and reliable voice calls, a must during such a mega sporting event like the FIFA World Cup.
A major upgrade of outdoor radio sites with the latest 5G technology was intended to maximise country-level coverage, including stadiums, airports, rail networks, fan zones and other FIFA-related facilities, with free Wi-Fi provided everywhere around the country, which has already been named as one of the best in the world in regards with the coverage of 5G networks. Enhanced capacity for fan zones and other event venues and hotspots has ensured crowds were adequately catered for during the first weeks at Qatar 2022.
“The excitement is ramping up as we move further into the second half of the tournament; we fully expect demand for our world-class services to rise in parallel,” concluded Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulla Al Thani.