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Du vs Etisalat... Is one preferred over the other? Is one cheaper? Does one provide better coverage? Faster speeds? Are plan structures better with one?

Is there any benefit to utilizing the same company for mobile and home Internet/phone?
 

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At home you do not generally have much of a choice - a building is generally covered by either Etisalat or Du, but not both. Also, in general, I haven't come across a package that gives you the benefit of mobile + home discounts.
I prefer Du over Etisalat as I generally find them cheaper (the phone provided by my work is Etisalat) and they charge by the second. In terms of coverage I don't find any difference between the two phones, but it may depend on the area you live and work in.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
At home you do not generally have much of a choice - a building is generally covered by either Etisalat or Du, but not both. Also, in general, I haven't come across a package that gives you the benefit of mobile + home discounts.
I prefer Du over Etisalat as I generally find them cheaper (the phone provided by my work is Etisalat) and they charge by the second. In terms of coverage I don't find any difference between the two phones, but it may depend on the area you live and work in.
Is data usage common here? What about texting? Coming from USA, I'm used to unlimited data and essentially unlimited minutes/text. I see the plans are like 100 MB, 250 MB, etc with 100, 250, etc texts/minutes. Do you find it easy to reach those tiers? Plans in the USA that are not unlimited are typically 1GB or 2GB per month with like 1500 texts if there is even a limit.
 

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Texting just isnt done that much here. It will add up quickly. I used to average maybe 2500 to 3000 messages a month easily back home. That just isnt possible here. Plans are a few hundred sms.

Get a data plan for your android, bb, or evil fruit phone. Even then, it is easy to go over the data amounts. A lot of people will have a blackberry w the 50dirham social plan that gets you unlimited bbm, yahoo, msn, etc messengers and access to facebook i think (I dont have a facebook so dont know/care about that) included, even if they have an iphone or android. Whats app (if you dont use bbm) will be your new best friend and will replace sms. You will have to get your friends and family to get whats app or get them to use yahoo or msn or something on their phones to talk to you. It is hard to do as the culture in the usa is just to sms.
 
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Texting just isnt done that much here. It will add up quickly. I used to average maybe 2500 to 3000 messages a month easily back home. That just isnt possible here. Plans are a few hundred sms.

Get a data plan for your android, bb, or evil fruit phone. Even then, it is easy to go over the data amounts. A lot of people will have a blackberry w the 50dirham social plan that gets you unlimited bbm, yahoo, msn, etc messengers and access to facebook i think (I dont have a facebook so dont know/care about that) included, even if they have an iphone or android. Whats app (if you dont use bbm) will be your new best friend and will replace sms. You will have to get your friends and family to get whats app or get them to use yahoo or msn or something on their phones to talk to you. It is hard to do as the culture in the usa is just to sms.

I have to disagree to an extent here... the UAE is driven on SMS aka "TEXT MESSAGES"! Your parking fines, banking purchases, speeding tickets, postal notifications, EVERYTHING is driven via SMS (all SMS incoming are free)

Do people here use traditional SMS NO... they use BBM or What's App but guess what? THEY ARE TEXT MESSAGES!!!

Everyone here texts and they do it all day long all day and everyday. Everyone I know back in the US and Canada has What's App or BBM and I am connected just as much if not more than when I was home. In fact most people here have 2 phones just for these reasons! One for work/voice calls and the other for "text messaging" whether it be SMS, WhatsApp or BBM.

DU offers much better international/data packages but the coverage is no where that of Etisalat. If you plan on staying within city limits all the time then DU is the way to go IMO.
 

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Sending messages thru bbm or using whats up isnt the same as sms/text messages. :confused: If whats up or bbm went thru as text messages, I would be in the 6000 to 8000 range a month here and cant even imagine what that would cost. Where as most of them are bbm, it is 'free' with the blackberry package.

I agree, people send messages all day, everyday. You learn quickly that actually speaking on the phone is expensive so will not do it much. A person adapts here was my point.

Glad to hear 'yours' use whats app, but most my friends and family only sms as they have low data plans but unlimited sms in the usa.
 
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For those of us who aren't living the American dream, we've always paid for our SMS's so really isn't that much of a shock! Before BBM and Whatsapp, everyone used SMS. Blackberry was only made available to the general public, for personal use a couple of years ago.

Etisalat seems to be better overall. They were here first and Du is still playing catch up. However, Du does have monopoly over certain areas of the city when it comes to home packages so your home internet/TV/land line will depend on where you live.

Cell phone - go with Etisalat.
 

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Thanks for the tips. Will check out whatsapp as I do not use BB.
For your friends back in the US get a Google Voice number before you come over, it can do two things:

1. You can forward your US number to Google Voice and it will transcribe and email you the voice mails.

2. Your US friends will have a US number to text you on and you a free way to text them back. (no MMS though).

Much better in my opinion than expecting them to get a special app.

I got a 1gb data plan when I first got here and didn't go over for the month, but I have WiFi at work and at home that I use when I am there. I am a fairly heavy user for news and stocks and even stream a bit of iHeart radio but no video.

Also get a Magic Jack, very nice to have as well for staying in touch.
 

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I believe DU is expensive when it comes to Triple Packs (TV, landline & Internet) & if your building is covered by either du or etisalat then i guess you cant switch the triple pack to another provider. However if you are looking for a specific cell phone provider only then I agree with what INFAMOUS mentioned - "DU offers much better international/data packages but the coverage is no where that of Etisalat. If you plan on staying within city limits all the time then DU is the way to go IMO."
 

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I don't even use 40 MB of data a month on my (very good) android smartphone. I use wifi at home and at office, and otherwise don't need to have to "check in" on facebook everywhere I go, so keep the mobile data switched off. When I am out of the office/home, I get my office emails on the BB. For personal emails, I don't get too fussed about having to reply to them all the time, so only check them at home/office.
The data usage only becomes important when I am out of Dubai, and then good luck using Du or Etisalat. The data usage bundles do not cover roaming data usage, the charges for which are very high.
 

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in my experience, du charges are better than etisalat but the signal is not good, especially if you are inside the building.
 

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Thx for all those valuable info...what is the carrier who is there in the Marina towers for home internet ?

And yes whatsapp is da bomb ;)
 

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XDoodlebugger said:
For your friends back in the US get a Google Voice number before you come over, it can do two things:



Also get a Magic Jack, very nice to have as well for staying in touch.
Does Google voice work also for Europe...since i will be coming to Dubai from France

And what is magic jack ?
 

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Also another question .is there any implementation of 4G in dubai for mobile phones...and who carries it ?

And nothing abt the speed of internet compared to lightning fast europe internet ?
 

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check out the websites of Du (du.ae) and etisalat.ae for the pricing. The speeds are okay (but upload speeds are not). There is no 4G as I understand it, but I may be wrong
 

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Yeah thanx..by the way i already checked the website some time back...but nothing value more customer's own opinion over company's marketing blah blah ;)
 

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check out the websites of Du (du.ae) and etisalat.ae for the pricing. The speeds are okay (but upload speeds are not). There is no 4G as I understand it, but I may be wrong
etisalat offers 4g but it's bundled with hardware, only available on postpaid and isn't on the same frequency as sprint/at&t. your ipad 3 will only work with 3g/hspa+ in dubai. very few top end devices currently support 4g anyways.
on the du 3g network i was getting around 1mbps upload and download with a decent ping. which is fine for phone use, but not so great for dongle/tethering.
of course all of this depends on your location, so do a test with a prepaid sim before you start investing in contracts or hardware.
 

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back to op:
1. there's not much value from what i can see in bundling mobile with landline-based provider, so don't make it a criterion for selection.
2. coverage varies, but i haven't noticed an overall "better" provider. you'd need to choose a provider primarily based on the location of your most frequent usage.
3. du's prepaid is better than etisalat's in my experience:
- du offers more flexible bundles (you get a bonus amount on each recharge and can choose if you want to allocate it to airtime, overseas calls, or data.
- price is much of a muchness depending on your needs.
- the du self-service portal online is much better than the etisalat one. just register your number and credit card and sms 135 with the amount you want to recharge. none of that last-minute till slip dithering. you can also add secondary sims and recharge those the same way. with etisalat, you need to be a postpaid user to achieve the same, and can't recharge via sms afaik. this was the main reason i ended up going with du.
 
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