5G uptake has more than doubled in the past 3 years – Huawei

With telecommunication networks such as Safaricom out their 5G services locally, Huawei technologies says that the new age technology has more than doubled in uptake over the past 3 years.

Peng Song, President of Huawei ICT Strategy and Marketing, said in a speech at the 13th Global Mobile Broadband Forum that the firm’s 5G business success was accelerating, noting that 5G network carriers outside China had increased by more than 100% from the beginning of 2019. From 200,000 base stations then, he announced that Huawei has deployed just under half a million base stations outside China, accounting for 70% of the world’s total.

In Africa alone, 12 telecom operators in 10 markets are already marketing mobile services backed by the ultra-high-speed technology. Safaricom’s new 5G service has been shown to reach downloads speeds of 500Mbps in Kenya.  Kenya is one of the key markets that have adopted the next generation technology where 5G enabled mobile phones are already available locally, with the lowest- cost devices falling below Kshs 50,000.

Huawei is highly optimistic that 5G uptake will continue to rise as consumers do more interactions on the internet and organizations embrace ultra-automation and maintenance. The acceleration of 5G uptake is also underpinned by the fact that existing video services deliver higher HD experience with its higher traffic capacity. Beyond expanding coverage, networks are being built to optimize different types of user experience such as optimizing them for better video download speeds.

It is suitable for livestreaming uplink and downlink capability requirements offering a superb latency experience for gamers in an environment where online gaming has grown in popularity. It also follows adaptation to industries requiring extensive coverage, such as energy, logistics, and smart cities.

Aaron said that operators have acknowledged that investing in 5G capability is a worthy investment to make. “Over the past three years, we have seen operators explore the extent to which 5G can enable them accumulate business success cases and accelerate network monetization,” explained Aaron.

According to research conducted by Huawei, every Kshs 100 ($1) invested in a 5G service will be able to yield back Kshs 2,600 ($26) over the next 8 years. This is primarily in data sales as the technology delivers high consumption. Safaricom for instance has already set a premium rate on its 5G data connections, following a global trend.


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