5G giants dream of a connected Africa

Published on : 21/01/2021 – 00:13

We have been telling you about it for a few weeks, 5G technology is coming to Africa. A very slow start, but the continent is already the battleground between the major manufacturers of antennas and networks. for example the Chinese Huawei and the Finnish Nokia have started to deploy their technologies.

Two telecom network giants stand out in the 5G landscape in Africa, Finland’s Nokia and the world leader in this technology, Chinese Huawei. The first team among others Togocom, the second a Moroccan operator and participates in the deployment of a South African network. The two groups share the same vision. Africa still has to wait before seeing 5G spread. ” What must be taken into account is that technological cycles last several decades. », Says Joachim Wuilmet, marketing director of Nokia.

► To read also: 5G for the general public in Africa, it is not for 2021

Clearly, telecom operators are still migrating their subscribers from 2G to 3G and then to 4G, still in the minority in Africa. There is therefore no rush, according to Huawei’s vice-president for the Mediterranean and North Africa region, Adnan Ben Halima: ” we still have time to think about 5G because 4G already does the trick, and therefore it can serve general public subscribers and guarantee very acceptable speeds. »

Still, the future is brewing today and both groups agree that the 5G potential in Africa is enormous. ” The growth of cities is mainly in Africa, says Joachim Wuilmet. The fifteen cities that will grow the most in the world are in Africa. So there are potentially several hundred million people to connect. »

A technology first and foremost for businesses

Besides the general public, 5G will first to seduce professionals, industries and banks. ” I will talk about Morocco where the aeronautical and automotive industries, for example, could be sectors requiring 5G, estime Adnan Ben Halima. We are also talking about telemedicine. In other countries, the logistics or transport sectors could provide good scenarios for deploying 5G. »

Because this technology will introduce a real breakthrough in the way businesses operate. ” 5G was designed for the world of objects, what we see emerging is the use of dedicated networks for industrial sites. For example, we work with mining operators or oil platforms by providing them with dedicated networks, explains Joachim Wuilmet. We start with 4G which will eventually evolve towards 5G. And you can imagine how a connected platform can allow the operator to control performance, optimize resources, predict future production needs. And when we add 5G, we can envision technicians using virtual or augmented reality solutions to perform very complex maintenance tasks. »

► Read also: Deployment, potential risks, Huawei … What you need to know about 5G

5G will accelerate the development of African businesses as the mobile phone has encouraged household banking. Here at least is the I think hardware manufacturers.

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