Nigeria To Roll Out 5G Spectrum By August

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has announced that it will be rolling out fifth generation (5G) technology in August.

NCC Executive Vice President, Prof. Umar Danbatta said so during the 90th edition of the Telecom Consumer Parliament (TCP) held in Lagos on Thursday.

Danbatta said NCC, with the support of the Federal Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy, will ensure the deployment of spectrum to further accelerate the growth of Nigeria’s broadband services.

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“The final allocation letters have been sent to MTN and Mafab Communications, who emerged as the winners of the 3.5 GHz spectrum auction conducted on December 13, 2021.

“Per the information memorandum, licensees are expected to begin rolling out 5G services beginning August 24, 2022.

“The successful completion of the process leading to the final letters is confirmation that the rollout of 5G technology services in Nigeria is underway,” Danbatta said.

The EVC reiterated that the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) revealed that the 5G network will deliver enhanced mobile broadband (eMBB); Massive machine-type communications (mMTC) and ultra-reliable, low-latency communications (URLLC).

He said with the estimated population of 214 million Nigerians; with an average growth rate of 2.6% per year, approximately 76.46% of the population is expected to be under 35 years of age.

“In line with demographic changes, internet penetration has increased from 3% in 2004 to 73.82% in September 2022, while broadband penetration has increased from less than 10% in 2015 to 40.01% in September 2021.

“The potential for expansion is a great opportunity for 5G deployment, as carriers are certain to recoup their investment,” he said.

He noted that some spectrum challenges identified by the ITU included the requirements for more spectrally efficient technologies, which were more than current 3G and 4G systems required.

He said the ITU has also identified intrinsic propagation characteristics of millimeter waves, which may require more base stations.

“This is a challenge that stakeholders need to work together to address as Nigeria rolls out 5G technology services,” EVC said.

The theme of the meeting was “5G Technology: Opportunities and Challenges”. (NOPE)

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