The telecoms regulator says that Airtel Nigeria 5G trial is taking place on Thursday in Abuja to validate the fifth-generation mobile technology’s feasibility in the country.
The Airtel Nigeria 5G trial coming from Nigeria’s third-largest mobile network operator (MNO) precedes the planned 3.5GHz spectrum auction for the deployment of the fifth-generation mobile service in the country, to be held December 13 this year in Abuja by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC).
The Airtel Nigeria 5G trial represents another milestone in the evolution of the local telecoms market which, as of October this year, posted 191,951,769 active phone lines, representing 100.56% teledensity; 140,337,560 active internet connections, and 76,146,156 broadband connections 39.89% according to NCC official data reviewed by Technology Times.
Airtel Nigeria 5G Trial in Evolving Market
NCC says it is supervising the 5G proof of concept (PoC) by Airtel Networks Limited and its unnamed Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) to be carried out in Abuja, the nation’s seat of power.
Airtel’s 5G trial is the second in the country after the first trial by MTN Nigeria supervised by NCC across locations in the country that recorded satisfactory results for the mobile network technology.
NCC also says that Thursday’s Airtel Nigeria 5G trial hopes to validate the “National Policy on 5G for Digital Economy.
The NCC has set a reserve price of $197.4 million for prospective bidders in the 3.5 Gigahertz Spectrum band auction for the launch of 5G services in Nigeria in which two licence bouquets will be up for sale through competitive bids opening December 13 in Abuja, according to the auction rules.
The regulator also granted an extension expiring today to prospective bidders to pay an intention to bid deposit (IBD) representing 10% of the $197.4 million to guarantee them a slot in the upcoming 5G auction.