Mobile communications and Internet in Saudi ArabiaThe development of telecommunications in Saudi Arabia is roughly equivalent to the United States. Under the country code +966, there were a total of 52.02 million connections in 2021. Among them were 45.43 million mobile phones, which corresponds to an average of 1.3 per person. In the US, this figure is 1.1 mobile phones per person.
With about 145,941 webhosts, Saudi Arabia is below the world's average by population. At the end of 2020, 7,977 of these, or about 5 percent, were secured with SSL or comparable encryption.
Back to overview: Saudi Arabia
Internet speed for cell phones and fixed networkWith an average download speed of 94.35 Mbit/second for fixed-network broadband internet, Saudi Arabia ranks 36th in an international comparison. The upload rate of only 37.74 Mbit/second was significantly lower (55th place).
In mobile internet, i.e., on tablets and smartphones, Saudi Arabia comes 12th with a download speed of 95.44 Mbit/second. The upload speed of around 15 Mbit was only enough for 21st place.
The Speedtest Global Index published regularly by Ookla is based on several million individual measurements in April 2023 from 180 countries.
Mobile phone rates in Saudi ArabiaEvery year, the International Telecommunication Union calculates for many countries what a mobile phone contract costs to use. A monthly budget averaging US$ 24.20 was calculated Saudi Arabia in 2021. This is about the same value as in the previous year.
The ITU refers to the costs for monthly use and includes 140 telephony minutes, 70 text messages and a data transfer of 2 GBytes. The transfer speed should be the minimum of a 3G connection, i.e. at least UMTS, which is already outdated in many parts of the world. 2 GBytes do not sound much. However, this is already quite a high consumption in a worldwide comparison. If one does not take a fixed amount in US dollars, but converts it to the economic output per inhabitant, a user in Saudi Arabia spends 1.3% of his gross national income on mobile telephony. Worldwide, this rate is around 6.6 percent.
In the USA, the monthly cost was around $38.10.
Network coverage with 5GIn 2021, network coverage with the 5G standard was already 75.40 percent of all inhabitants. The proportion of the population with at least 4G mobile Internet access was 100.0 percent. The 4G network standard includes both LTE and WiMAX.
The following diagrams show the development of the various telephone and internet connections as a percentage of the country's population. Values above 100 percent mean that, on average, every inhabitant has more than one connection.
Access to the internet in Saudi Arabia from 1990 - 2021
Broadband internet in Saudi Arabia 2001 - 2021Saudi Arabia is lagging behind in the expansion of broadband internet connections. Around 100 percent of all residents have access to the internet. Around 29 percent have their own fast internet connection, which is at least faster than the former ISDN (more than 256 kbit/s). All fixed connections via DSL, cable or satellite were counted here, but not those connected to the internet via mobile communications.
Landlines 1990 - 2021
The largest telecommunications provider in Saudi Arabia is Saudi Telecomfrom Riyadh. In 2022, the stock market value reached 60.71 billion dollars. With a profit of 3.02 billion U.S. dollars, it achieved a total turnover of 16.91 billion dollars.
Mobile phones 1990 - 2021
► All international calling codes
|Distribution in 2021||Saudi Arabia|
|Internet users||35.95 m||100.00 %||304.52 m||91.75 %|
|Broadband users||10.59 m||29.45 %||125.89 m||37.93 %|
|Landlines||6.59 m||18.34 %||97.82 m||29.47 %|
|Mobile cellulars||45.43 m||126.36 %||361.66 m||108.97 %|