ZTE and MTN launch the first 5G SA network in East Africa

ZTE and MTN launch the first 5G SA network in East Africa

30 January 2020 | Natalie Bannerman

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ZTE and MTN Uganda have jointly launched the first 5G Standalone (SA) network in East Africa.

On demonstration at the Experience the Future Together event in Kampala, the two showcased 5G use cases on the 5G SA network.

Using 60Mhz spectrum, the network achieved speeds of 1.494Gbps allowing it to support such applications as gigabit without fibre connectivity, cloud XR, ultra-HD live broadcast, autonomous driving and remote surgery.

The trial also featured real-time communication of an on-site fixed-wireless access network bionic robot, Cloud VR and other vertical industries.

The network leverages ZTE’s end-to-end 5G equipment, including common core to achieve the total separation of the signalling plane and the data plan without relying on the existing LTE core network EPC. The network can also be upgraded to support other 5G applications like uRLLC and mMTC.

"ZTE is very keen on sharing new technologies with MTN," said Bill Yi, vice president at ZTE. "We have been constantly enhancing our 5G capabilities and have become a core supplier of end-to-end solutions in the global ICT industry."

During the demonstration ZTE also showcased its 5G Common Core, Beyond 100G Transmission, 5G Flexhaul, 5G New Radio and Big Video, as well as its 5G terminal devices, such as Axon 10 Pro 5G smartphones, 5G indoor and outdoor routers.

The collaboration builds on the partnership between ZTE and MTN that started back in 2009 nvolving the fields of wireless, core network, transmission, energy infrastructure, terminals, and O&M services. To date ZTE has worked with 11 branches of MTN.

In related news, earlier this month ZTE partnered with China Telecom to deploy China’s first remote diagnosis platform for coronavirus pneumonia supported with the latest 5G technology.

Leveraging 5G with its high bandwidth and low latency enables the diagnosis and treatment of the coronavirus more efficient and convenient. The 5G remote diagnosis involves West China Hospital and Chengdu Public Health Clinic Center of Sichuan University.