MTN and Ericsson are collaborating on 5G technology applications in Africa

Africa’s largest Telecommunications network, MTN and mobile company Ericsson have partnered on the first 5G technology and applications trial in Africa, a part of a 5G demonstration starting in the first quarter of 2018.

This came as a result of an early collaboration of both companies on the roll-out of 5G technologies in South Africa, following the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) at AfricaCom 2017; one of the first of its kind in Africa.

Vice President and Head of Global Customer Unit MTN at Ericsson Middle East and Africa, Seckin Arikan  said “Ericsson is the first to launch a 5G trial with MTN in Africa, supporting our strategy of delivering next-generation mobile broadband, cloud as well as providing support for massive Internet of Things (IoT) deployment”.

An earlier 5G experimentation with MTN achieved a throughput of more than 20Gbps with less than 5ms latency, making it the highest achieved on a mobile network in Africa.

Having tested a range of 5G -use cases and applications in the Telecoms Test Lab proof of concept in South Africa, the 5G trial is projected to lead to commercial deployment sooner than expected.

According to Babak Fouladi, CTIO, MTN Group, “In collaboration with our partners, we will continue to identifying 5G use cases and applications for the digital transformation of industries such as mining, transportation, agriculture, manufacturing and utilities”.

“Together with our partners we are continuously pushing the boundaries of how 5G can meet the diverse needs of our customers. 5G gives us the opportunity to rethink how our business can add further value to the lives of our customers” Fouladi added.

The 5G trial is based on commercially available baseband hardware and 5G mobility is supported.