Namibians soon to enjoy reduced data rates with faster internet

Emma Theofelus

Namibians will soon be benefiting from 5G technology, with promises of ultra-fast internet at reduced data rates.

Mobile Telecommunication Company (MTC), in collaboration with Huawei, yesterday launched the first 5G trial in Windhoek.

MTC Managing director Licky Erastus said with 5G comes reduced data rates, which would have a significant impact on every aspect of our digital lives.

“5G is a fundamental platform for the fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) . . . 5G combines greater data transfer speeds and heightened processing power to enable the internet of things (IoT).

“With 5G comes reduced data rates, reduced latency, energy savings, cost reductions and higher system changes,” he said.

Although MTC is not ready for the commercial roll-out yet, the trial demonstrates the opportunities 5G could present to a digitally led economy, Erastus said.

“We wish to make it known that today’s event is not a commercial launch of 5G services in Namibia by MTC, but a trial demonstration, at which MTC wants to share with you what a possible 5G future in Namibia could look like,” he said.

According to Erastus, this means higher quality video and faster delivery of multimedia content.

Information and communication technology minister Emma Theofelus says the launch was long overdue and was delayed due conspiracy theories that 5G was the leading cause of Covid-19.

“In 2021, the ministry was ready for Namibia to roll out 5G, but due to the conspiracy theories that were going on, there was a delay, as investigations had to be conducted to ensure Namibians of the safety of 5G,” she said.

Theofelus said the trial launch is a milestone for the country.

“It symbolises Namibia’s stride and commitment to putting technology at the centre of driving the national development agenda.

“Namibia is pursuing to be industrialised by the year 2030, and as technology keeps evolving, we can only achieve that vision if we keep up with the latest technology that is favourable to the fourth Industrial Revolution.

“The opportunities that come with 5G are vast, and the onus is on us to ensure we take full leverage, because with 5G, the foundation for providing e-governance, e-commerce, and e-health is cemented with superior and faster connectivity,” she said.

Huawei Namibia managing director Michael Zhang, at the event said 5G offers ultra-high speed to enable superb mobile network experience, allowing users to watch ultra-high definition videos, live-streaming and other seamless internet experiences.

“It also has a much lower latency, which makes it possible for all kinds of remote operations, for instance, remote driving and medical operation.

“5G also offers vast connections – massive machine-type communication, massive internet of things.

“Imagine not only your cellphone is connected, but 5G would be able to connect all devices you can think of at the same time – your car, fridge, lights, all different sensors, even your water metres,” Zhang said.

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