MTN became in September 2022 the first telecom operator to deploy 5G in Nigeria. The company wants to accelerate the adoption of the latest generation mobile technology in the country in a context marked by a growing demand for high-speed connectivity.

Mobile operator MTN Nigeria hopes to cover 10% of the Nigerian population with its fifth generation (5G) mobile network by the end of the year. To this end, the company plans to accelerate investments in the deployment of 5G sites. This is according to MTN Group’s integrated report for the year ended December 31, 2022.

It was in September 2022 that MTN launched commercial ultra-broadband in Nigeria. In a first phase, the new network was deployed in Lagos. It will be extended to six other cities, namely Abuja, Port Harcourt, Ibadan, Kano, Owerri and Maiduguri, then gradually to the rest of the country. In 2022, the company rolled out 588 5G sites in major cities across Nigeria. It aims for national coverage by 2025. 

The generalization of 5G coverage in Nigeria is expected to facilitate the use of services such as communications, video games, video on demand, e-learning, e-government, artificial intelligence, Internet of Things (IoT)… 

It should be remembered, however, that the adoption of ultra-high speed in Africa could be slowed down by the high cost of smartphones compatible with the technology, among other things. According to a report by Ecofin Pro titled “5G: What can change in Africa with ultra-broadband”, 5G smartphones currently cost between $200 and $1,500. They are therefore not within the reach of the majority of the African population. The high cost of 5G internet service is also an obstacle.

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