The vice-president of MTN Group for West and Central Africa, Ebenezer Thum Asante, spoke on Thursday in Abidjan about 5G during an investment forum between Cote d’Ivoire and South Africa, on the second day of President Cyril Ramaphosa’s 72-hour state visit.
The two-day Ivorian-South African forum is being held at the Sofitel Hotel Ivoire, a 5G pilot site.
For the event, the hotel’s network has been connected to 5G, providing an extraordinary experience.
According to an internal source, this pilot phase started a fortnight ago.
It will be distributed following a protocol with the Ministry of Digital Economy, Telecommunications and Innovation through the Regulatory Authority for ICT/Telecom in Cote d’Ivoire (ARTCI).
The 5G technology offers 1,500 megabits compared to 150 megabits for 4G, i.e. 10 times the speed.
It will provide a better experience for streaming, online games and videos, and artificial intelligence.
The pilot phase “is to prove that technologically everything is in place, because MTN is deploying 5G in Cote d’Ivoire,” the source said, adding that talks are underway with the authorities to define the allocated spectrum.
In view of the technological requirements, the group has set itself an ambitious plan to migrate to 5G mode in order to connect and satisfy its customers better, while connecting businesses and economies.
In Africa, several countries have already successfully experimented with it, notably South Africa, which was the first African country where 5G is available.
Several operators have launched their networks in 2020, including MTN.
5G also offers more opportunities for the use of connected objects in several fields of activity (Industry, Health, Agriculture, Livestock, Aeronautics, Automotive, Retail etc).
It allows to connect 1000 times more objects per km² than 4G, and offers speeds at least 10 times faster than 4G.
It reduces latency (the time between sending and receiving information on the Internet) by a factor of 10, and consumes ten times less energy for the same amount of use.
“With this secure cruising speed, the group wants to help propel Africa,” said Vice President Ebenezer Thum Asante, suggesting that by 2025, MTN wants to be the “champion operator” on the continent.