Saudi Arabia lifts ban on Skype, WhatsApp, and other messaging apps

Shannon Liao, writing for The Verge;

Saudi Arabia is lifting a year-long ban on Skype and other services like WhatsApp and Snapchat, effective at 8PM ET today. According to a statement from Saudi Arabia’s telecommunications authority posted on Twitter, any voice and video apps that meet the rules will be allowed.

Here’s the tweet from CITC;

You can read Saudi’s CITC official announcement here, the translated version here.

Saudi Arabia block VoIP-based messenger more than 4 years ago. It make sense for the Kingdom to remove the block specially in a state of economic crunch, since an increase in data consumption will be an additional revenue for telecom provider.

Internet video calling apps to be unblocked next week in Saudi Arabia

Arab News;

Internet voice and video calling apps such as Skype, Viber and WhatsApp will be unblocked in Saudi Arabia from next week.

Coordination between the Communications and Information Technology Commission and telecommunications service providers is under way to enable everyone to benefit from applications that provide voice and video communications over the Internet, said Abdullah bin Amer Al-Sawahah, the minister of Communications and Information Technology.

VoIP apps like Skype, Viber and WhatsApp have been blocked in the Kingdom for more than 4 years now.