Africa does not immediately spring to mind when one talks about 5G. Nor would Congo usually be the first country mentioned in connection with 5G in Africa. But the Congolese minister for telecom is determined to put his country on the 5G map.
Léon Juste Ibombo, the Minister of Post, Telecommunications and the Digital Economy, has recently been in meetings with a Spanish technology company called Applus+ that could help to propel Congo into the 5G future. Ibombo's particular hope is Applus+ will help to restore fortunes at Congo Télécom, the ailing telecom incumbent.
Although Congo Télécom has a long history in the country's telecom industry, it is lagging its rivals when it comes to mobile. According to research by Ovum, MTN and Airtel each served nearly one half of the mobile market at the end of 2017, leaving Congo Télécom with a low single-digit market share.
While 5G may have stolen the headlines, the introduction of an external partner to support the state-owned Congo Télécom could be a way of breaking the duopoly stranglehold on the Congolese mobile market. Ibombo, who has championed the initiative as a good example of public-private partnership, is also keen to bring high-speed broadband services to Congo.
Based out of Madrid, Applus+ provides technology solutions in different industries, including telecom. It works primarily as a systems integrator, but also offers testing, inspection and certification services. A partnership with Congo Télécom could help Applus+ to establish itself in Congo and the surrounding region. Despite its strong global footprint, and its presence in about a dozen African markets, the company has not been active in Congo until now.
This year did not begin the way most people expected it to, so what does the future of the telecoms sector look like in Africa in 2020? In this Connecting Africa online event, local analysts and industry stakeholders will discuss what African operators’ priorities for the year should be and the most significant market trends expected to dominate in 2020.
Will MNOs focus on sweating their current assets rather than investing in new technologies like 5G?
What impact will COVID-19 have on the continent’s networks?
What are the hot market trends in Africa when it comes to voice, data and mobile financial services?
The majority of 5G in Africa is still in the testing stage. However, as operators prepare their networks for the technology jump, what strategies are they deploying to ensure they gain the full value that 5G can offer Africa? This digital symposium will give you an insight into the opportunities and challenges facing Africa’s 5G rollout, with some country specific case studies unpacked.
How 5G-ready is African enterprise?
Is 5G a priority for in Africa, should it be? Or can operators and businesses focus on growing their 3G and 4G networks for enterprise instead?
What are the most significant enterprise business applications for 5G deployment on the continent, and where can 5G facilitate IoT applications?
Africa was the birthplace of Mobile Money and while it continues to rise in popularity, the industry is quickly evolving and launching more mobile-based financial services every day. In this Connecting Africa online event, local analysts and industry stakeholders will discuss how telcos are disrupting the financial services space and what the rise of Mobile Money 2.0 will look like for Africa.
From cash to mobile: heading towards a cashless society
Expanding MFS offerings beyond mobile money transfers
MNOs vs banks vs fintechs: an evolving competitive landscape
Unconnected and unbanked: fintech to improve financial inclusion
The rise of micro-loans and insurance through mobile platforms
Africa has the fastest growing population in the world and also the youngest, with 60% of Africans under the age of 25. It is clear that the next billion connected are going to be the mobile-only generation. This digital symposium will bring industry experts together to discuss Africa’s digital divide and how to get devices into the hands of young Africans and empower them to join the digital revolution.
Who’s Driving? The role of government & regulator, private tech companies, and public-private partnerships
Device affordability: are we reaching a tipping point?
Status check: Satellite vs Fiber and the enduring infrastructure gap
Exploring the wider societal and economic benefits of a connected, digitally literate continent