MTN has conducted the first “5G technology and applications trial in Africa” at its head office in Johannesburg.
The trial was conducted in partnership with Ericsson, and is part of the companies’ planned 5G demonstration.
“This follows the signing by the two companies of a memorandum of understanding to collaborate on the rollout of 5G technologies in South Africa,” said MTN.
MTN achieved a throughput of over 20Gbps with less than 5ms latency in the 5G trial, which is “the highest achieved on a mobile network in Africa”.
“The 5G trial is based on commercially-available baseband hardware and 5G mobility is supported.”
MTN has received a temporary licence for 800MHz of spectrum in the 15GHz band to conduct its 5G trials.
MTN said the tests will lead to the commercial deployment of 5G technologies in the near future.
“MTN and its partners continue identifying 5G use cases and applications for the digital transformation of industries,” it said.
Giovanni Chiarelli, CTIO at MTN SA, said 5G offers a new world of potential for South Africa.
“With 5G, remote healthcare through connected robots could offer world-class surgery in the most remote parts of the continent and the world. Self-driving cars could change the face of road safety, along with smart agriculture, smart mining, and smart cities,” he said.
There is no doubt that 5G will offer the consumer higher speeds… but to achieve this, we need the capacity that comes with additional spectrum.”