Rain has announced that it will use its 5G network to launch ultra-broadband services to homes and SMEs in South Africa.
The announcement comes after Rain sent an invite to media stating it will show off its live 5G network in November.
Paul Harris, Rain’s chairman, announced that Rain has rolled out its 4G network to metros in South Africa over the past 18 months, providing fast and affordable connectivity to users.
“The network currently comprises of more than 2,500 towers and it is planned to increase this to 5,000 towers over the next two years. Rain will… also roll out a 5G broadband fixed-wireless network in conjunction with its partners Huawei and Nokia,” said Harris.
Harris added that spectrum is a key driver of 5G and “the efficient use of these scarce resources is of paramount importance”.
“Rain will use its current allocated spectrum and leverage its existing LTE network to build the 5G network using 3.6GHz spectrum. This approach of sharing facilities and leveraging existing infrastructure will enable Rain to roll out the 5G network in a quick and cost-effective manner.”
The first use of the 5G network will be to offer ultra-broadband services to homes and SMEs, he said.
These will provide fibre-like speeds “without the installation complexities”, added Harris.
“The technology has the potential to dramatically reduce the cost of ultra-broadband Internet access for a broad section of South Africans.”
Rain’s 5G network will also support IoT systems, smart cities, and self-driving cars in the future.
“5G networks have the potential to be game changing for education in South Africa,” added Harris.