Local telecommunications companies will continue their expansions into parallel markets, according to Africa Analysis managing director Dobek Pater.
In an interview published in the City Press, Pater said Vodacom and MTN have been expanding into financial markets through insurance products and mobile money.
Pater expects this trend to continue in 2018, along with the increased expansion of LTE-A coverage.
He predicted that South Africans may not pay for voice services in five years, and data would become the primary paid telecommunications service.
Pater said the continued expansion of LTE-A services and the future implementation of 5G technology would also supplement high-speed fibre Internet, providing wider coverage at a lower cost of deployment.
His comments come after MTN recently conducted it first 5G technology and applications trial at its head office in Johannesburg.
The trial was conducted in partnership with Ericsson, and MTN achieved a throughput of over 20Gbps with less than 5ms latency.
Vodacom is also trialling 5G tech in South Africa, through a partnership with Nokia.