In a press release on September 19, leading US 5G network provider, Ericsson has revealed its partnership with South African telecommunications company, MTN to collectively launch 5G network in Nigeria. This follows MTN’s successful commercial launch in Lagos, a day prior to the partnership announcement.
As stated in the deal, phase one of the launch would cover certain parts of Lagos and other cities in Nigeria.
Ericsson’s 5G technology – which includes 5G Radio Access Network and NSA Packet Core – will accelerate the development and digitalization of key sectors such as education, healthcare and manufacturing. It will also empower consumers and enterprises with innovative 5G applications that will unlock the true potential of the Internet of Things (IoT), Artificial Intelligence (AI), Smart cities and Immersive Communication over Augmented (AR) and Virtual reality (VR) for millions of new consumers in the country.
Having guaranteed the Ericsson radio system, MTN will in turn provide advanced Mobile broadband and fixed wireless access services which shall unlock a range of new opportunities in the Enterprise domain. The new 5G services can bring about unique Sustainable Development initiatives for agriculture, energy, financial inclusion, and security, among others, overcoming past institutional challenges and barriers to growth.
Commenting on the partnership, Chief Technical Officer, MTN Nigeria, Mohammed Rufai says: “5G will revolutionize the way we live and communicate across industries. With the speeds 5G offers, we will be able to experience the internet with low latency, which means no lag, making our virtual interactions more real. At MTN, we will continue to pursue the rollout of 5G technology to revolutionize internet access across the continent.”
Vice President of Ericsson Middle East and Africa, Hossam Kandeel says: “5G is not just about speed. 5G helps people do more with their devices, unlocking a whole new world of possibilities for society. 5G connectivity is likely to pave the way for life-altering advancements and we are proud to be a part of Nigeria’s 5G digital transformation that has only just begun. With connectivity being the backbone of digitization, we are committed to delivering the best service to our partners at MTN Nigeria to support them in this thrilling journey.”
In the future, MTN Nigeria’s Ericsson-powered 5G network will be driven by software-defined network capabilities where a combination of currently available and well-understood AI techniques will allow a higher degree of practical autonomous operation. AI is creating opportunities in terms of improved performances, higher efficiency, enhanced customer experience as well as creating new business models and use cases for 5G, IoT and enterprise.