Today at MWC, Huawei has announced the launch of the first 5G commercial network in South Africa, which is a big deal for the country.
Announcing this in a press conference at Mobile World Congress at Barcelona, this move is a testament of the company taking advantage of deploying this infrastructure as soon as possible in Africa.
“In a sense, it gives places like Africa an opportunity to leapfrog in technology,” Huawei officials said in the presser. “5G is here. The big signal that is going to hit us when the ecosystems start developing, devices start becoming available at the end of this year and we see a huge opportunity for growth.”
This is being done in partnership with Rain which is a data only network in South Africa. Rain is building its 5G network on the 3.6Ghz spectrum and has apparently deployed 20 new base stations in Johannesburg and Capetown in its first phase of rollout. The company wants to rollout this 5G infrastructure to cover the major cities of Johannesburg, Capetown and eve Durban later on.
Rain wants to start offering its 5G commercial services in South Africa in September of this year which is pretty quick.
This is actually pretty impressive to rollout 5G that fast in a time when companies are scraping around to roll out this new tech. 5G has advantages like having way faster data speeds than 4G, lower latency than 4G and increased capacities, but it has its own disadvantages like the high initial infrastructure costs thanks to the obscene number of base towers its needs.