Wireless infrastructure provider, Comsol Networks and Samsung South Africa demonstrated a live 5G pilot network in Soweto on Friday (7 September).
According to Comsol, it has access to the largest tranche of contiguous 28GHz in South Africa, making it the local front-runner for 5G services.
Because of this, Samsung South Africa is now looking to expand into the 5G network industry in partnership with Comsol in country.
The pilot network was officially switched on Friday morning at an event in Soweto, demonstrating 1.75 gigabit per second download speeds.
Comsol CEO Iain Stevenson said that the intention is to launch commercial 5G services to businesses and consumers in certain areas before the end of 2019.
The Soweto pilot network draws on the combined strengths of a number of global and local players – Samsung’s 5G solutions, Dark Fibre Africa providing fibre backhaul and MWeb as the ISP, Stevenson said.
“While 5G broadly defines the forthcoming evolution of mobile networks over a wide range of frequencies, this specific pilot network is 5G Fixed Wireless Access (5G-FWA),” he said.
“5G-FWA uses the kind of network technology that will come to be associated with the 5G era – the likes of beamforming and a high-frequency millimetre wave spectrum such as 28GHz – to provide an exponential performance boost to wireless broadband services.”
According to Comsol, FWA will deliver high-quality, high-speed bandwidth services and low latency to complement existing fibre deployments.