It looks like WhatsApp will the next VoIP-based communication tool that will block in Saudi Arabia. The reason? WhatsApp refused to accept the regulatory conditions issued by the CITC. This was in connection to the warning that CITC issued lst March, that they will block any VoIP-based messaging service such as Skype, Viber and WhatsApp if mobile providers in the KSA cannot find ways on how to monitor these encrypted applications.
We have been communicating with WhatsApp and other similar communication platforms to get them to cooperate and comply with the Saudi telecom providers, however nothing has come of this communication yet,” Abdullah Al-Darrab, governor of the CITC.
Early this month, CITC blocked the Viber service in Saudi Arabia, citing the company’s failure to to comply with regulatory requirements and rules in force in the Kingdom. While Viber CEO and Founder Talmon Marco promised to restore the service without complying to CITC demands.
Saudi Arabia currently have 15.8 million Internet subscribers and a percentage of that number will be a boost to any online business like Viber or WhatsApp. I guess, I can cross out WhatsApp from the 10 alternatives that I’ve listed earlier.
Last modified: June 17, 2013