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Airtel rolls out 5G in Lagos, Abuja, 2 other states

Airtel 5G
Carl Cruz, Airtel Nigeria CEO

Airtel Nigeria today rolled out commercial 5G service in 4 states, including Lagos, Abuja, Rivers, and Ogun.

With this, the telecom company becomes the second network operator to roll out commercial 5G in Nigeria after MTN, which blazed the 5G trail in September last year. After the 4 piloting states, Airtel is expected to roll out the service in at least 6 more states in the next one year to meet the licence obligation of 10 states in a year as stipulated by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC).

Speaking during the media launch in Lagos, the Chief Executive Officer of Airtel Nigeria, Carl Cruz, promised that the network will democratize 5G service offerings in Nigeria. He said Airtel’s subscribers would now enjoy super-fast data services and redefined services in other sectors of the economy including telemedicine, agric, and others.

To make the service easily accessible to Nigerians, especially for many that do not have 5G-enabled mobile devices, Airtel said it would also be subsidizing its 5G routers to make it affordable.

FG’s commitment

Cruz noted that the launch of the 5G by Airtel was thanks to the commitment of the federal government, which facilitated the release of the spectrum. He said the particular spectrum made available to the operators in Nigeria would make the experience unique for Nigerians.

“Airtel Nigeria is proud to be an early mover with 5G technology, not just in Africa but all over the world. Thanks to the commitment of the Nigerian government, 5G became a reality early in Nigeria when only about 60 countries had access worldwide. In addition to that, the frequency spectrum band allocated to 5G will make the experience wore worthwhile for consumers. “Our goal as Airtel Nigeria, therefore, is to make 5G accessible and widespread in the country. So, if you have a 5 G-enabled device—Samsung, iPhone, or any other brand—you can now experience the speed and robustness of 5G on the Airtel Nigeria network,” Cruz said.

He added that the unique advantage of Airtel Nigeria 5G is in the company’s commitment to bringing imagination to life for everyone.

“If you go by our recently-launched brand theme – A Reason to Imagine – you will notice that it fits perfectly with this paradigm shift. With 5G now, it is more achievable to empower creatives and entrepreneurs in tech, medicine, fashion, retail, communications, and media to bring executive more adventurous ideas,” he said.


Although, Mafab Communications, which also got 5G licence at the same time as MTN had announced its launch earlier this year, the company is yet to begin commercial rollout as its routers are not available in the market yet. Airtel now joins MTN to become the second operator that have rolled out 5G in Nigeria while Mafab is being awaited to follow suit.

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