Following the announcement that Vodacom and Nokia will be teaming up to trial 5G technology in South Africa, MTN has announced that it will be launching its own trial with Ericsson.
While Vodacom said its goal is to be first to launch 5G in the country, MTN claims that its trial will be the first in South Africa, expected to start in the first quarter of 2018.
MTN and Ericsson signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) at AfricaCom 2017 to collaborate on the rollout of 5G technologies in South Africa, one of the first in Africa.
The partnership will see Ericsson providing MTN with end-to-end 5G capacity support, additionally both companies will identify 5G use cases and applications for the digital transformation of industry verticals such as mining, transportation, agriculture, manufacturing and utilities.
“5G gives us the opportunity to rethink our business and address previously untapped value chains. The new technology opens up new opportunities in new ecosystems,” said Giovanni Chiarelli, CTIO, MTN South Africa.
“In collaboration with Ericsson, we are continuously testing, learning and pushing the boundaries of how 5G can meet the diverse needs of our customers in the future. We’re developing 5G technology based on real business needs.”
Seckin Arikan, Vice President and Head of Global Customer Unit MTN at Ericsson Middle East and Africa. said that Ericsson has the most signed telecom operator MoUs in the industry, and is the first to launch a 5G initiative with MTN in Africa.
“This supports our strategy of delivering next-generation mobile broadband, cloud and providing support for massive Internet of Things (IoT) deployment. This initiative also enables new industry use cases thanks to increased throughput and reduced latency,” he said.