The giant telecommunications firm, Airtel is set to release its Fifth-Generation (5G) network services between now and next week. The launch will enable Nigerians to have access to 5G services in the country.
The telecom firm has promised its subscribers a faster network speed than 4G, ultra low latency and improved network capability.
This was made known six months after the firm purchased 100MHz of spectrum in the 3500MHz band and 2x5MHz of 2600MHz spectrum from the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), for a sum of $316.7 million.
According to Airtel, the purchase will enable a quality 4G network and launch 5G. The telecom firm with over 60 million subscribers in Nigeria, and 27 per cent market accessibility also announced in May, that it has renewed its 3G license, which will expire in 2032.
In a tweet by @AirtelNigeria, the telecom firm said: “Airtel 5G is almost ready for you, are you ready for it?”
In light of this, Airtel will be briefing the media on Monday, June 19, in Lagos, how its 5G rollout plan would pan out.
The 5G rollout by Airtel, joins MTN Nigeria, which launched its 5G services in August 2022 and has spanned across about 13 cities and activated more than 700 sites.
According to MTN, the cities with 5G availability include Lagos, Abuja, Port Harcourt, Kano, Owerri, Ibadan, Maiduguri, Abeokuta, Ife, Warri, Enugu, Ife and Ifo.
While Mafab Communications also did a media launch in January of its 5G services, the service is yet to be recognised in the country.
According to Olusegun Ogunsanya, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Airtel Africa, In its financial report for the year ended March 31, 2023, said strong customer and ARPU growth over the year shows that request for the firm’s services remains very strong and gives the firm the confidence to continue investing to support potential growths.
“Over the year, we invested $500 million on additional spectrum, including 5G, across many of our OpCos which, combined with our capex, will underpin our growth ambitions. Despite this investment, and driven by a disciplined capital allocation policy, our balance sheet remains strong and has been further de-risked over the last year by the prepayment of $450 million HoldCo debt in July last year.”