PRESS RELEASE: On November 15, 2023, the Africa 5G Summit (the 6th Southern Africa MBB VIP Salon) was held at the Africacom in Cape Town, South Africa. The summit was the big event in Africa MBB industry, bringing together industry elites from multiple Southern African countries. It has been held five times so far.
This year, industry leaders from regional government regulators, industry organizations, operators, and Huawei gathered together to draw an end-to-end development blueprint and share 5G development strategies and industry experience.
The theme of this year’s summit was “5G Lights Up Africa Together Towards Business Success”. The focus was on the background of the second half of global 5G development. Topics that were discussed included how operators in Southern Africa can continuously build value-added networks for 5G, improve 5G network experience, accelerate FWA industry development, and achieve 5G business success.
Richard Liu, President of Global Carrier Marketing & Solution Sales Dept of Huawei, opened the proceedings and delivered a keynote speech “Dream Africa’s 5G Prosperity, Build an Inclusive Digital Cornerstone”, calling for continuous localized innovation in Africa and work together to build a digital Africa. He mentioned that: “The remarkable intergenerational capabilities of 5G networks are accelerating the development of the ICT industry, and also stimulate huge innovation momentum, changing our lives and society. Global operators with a firm 5G strategy have achieved business success. To dream Africa’s 5G prosperity, it is recommended to build Digital Africa via 3 inclusive innovations, inclusive ecosystem, inclusive service and inclusive network, by maturing the 5G terminal ecosystem, developing FWA killer services and building 4G/5G synergy network, build a solid digital foundation of Africa.”
Ms Thabisa Faye, Director and Chairman of the 5G Council Committee of the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa, delivered an insightful speech on the value of spectrum in Africa. She said that the mobile industry is the driving force of global GDP and needs to continue to promote 5G network deployments in Africa. In the future, ICASA will continue to promote active spectrum strategy to develop the MBB industry in South Africa and benefit the lives of African people.
Zoltan Miklos, general manager of MTN South Africa, shared the Ambition 2025 development strategy of MTN South Africa. He pointed out that MTN South Africa will adopt digital solutions that lead Africa’s progress and strive to build the best network and provide excellent user experience. In addition, MTN SA will develop in the ToC, ToB, and ToH fields, accelerate digital transformation, and lead the continuous growth of the digital economy.
Alan Loh, executive general manager of innovative solutions at Zain Saudi Arabia, shared Zain’s 5G business success results and explained that Zain has become a global leader in 5G FWA through three core DNAs: leading services, leading network experience, and leading technologies in the 5G era.
Langat James Kipkorir, Director of regional network implementation and operations at Safaricom, delivered the speech entitled ” Unleash The Power of “123” Strategy Thrive Home Broadband Development”, introducing Safaricom’s wireless home broadband strategy, including network building strategies, market expansion factors and innovative technologies to improve user experience. He said, “2.6Ghz NR will support the growth of MBB data revenue and accelerate the development of home and enterprise broadband through one time investment, two technologies (one band for both 4G/5G deployment), and three-category markets (ToC, ToB, and ToH).
Abdul Malik Ahmed, Senior Manager of the Fixed Broadband Marketing Dept of MTN Nigeria, shared MTN Nigeria’s “Own THE HOME” wireless home broadband strategy, including FWA/FTTx technologies and future network construction plans. He said that FWA is the main driving force for home broadband growth, “Own THE HOME” wireless home broadband strategy will continue to develop 4G/5G FWA and FTTH services to win home broadband customers. MTN Nigeria will continue to enable Nigeria’s future digital transformation through 5G.
Calvin Govender, EBU General Manager of MTN South Africa, delivered a keynote speech entitled “5G Accelerating Digital Transformation in South Africa”. Taking 5G Smart Mining as an example, he explained the important value of 5G technology to South Africa’s ToB industry. He mentioned that the mining industry has a very promising potential in South Africa. With its high bandwidth, low latency, and high reliability capabilities, 5G networks enable applications like remote control and IoT applications, making mining operations safer and smarter, further promoting the digital transformation of thousands of industries in South Africa.
Kenechi Okeleke, Regional, Social and Policy Research Director of GSMA Intelligence, shared insights on the future development trends and opportunities of 5G FWA services in Africa. He said that 5G FWA has been widely recognized as an alternative to fixed broadband, with 116 operators worldwide launching 5G-based commercial FWA services in 57 markets. The maturity of 5G FWA technologies and businesses is bringing new opportunities for digitalization in Africa and helping Africa bridge the “last mile” gap of fixed broadband connections.
Finally, the participants took to the stage and released the white paper “5G FWA in Africa, Emerging Trends and Opportunities” written by the GSMA Intelligence. All parties will work together to promote the development of 5G FWA services in Africa and meet the needs of families and enterprises.