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After months of talk, data-only network Rain today delivered on its promises, unveiling its first consumer 5G network in South Africa.
At present, the 5G network “will only be available in certain areas in Johannesburg and Tshwane”, a slight deviation from what the company told Memeburn earlier this year.
That said, it will be rolled out to Cape Town and Durban, as well as other major metros “during 2019 and 2020”.
The network is set to offer users download speeds of up to 700Mbps, but real world speeds will likely hover around 200Mbps, the company explained in a release. Uncapped deals will start at R1000 per month.
While no smartphones currently offer 5G connectivity in South Africa, Rain will offer its users 5G home routers from Huawei.
Rain is utilising its 4G data networking infrastructure to build its 5G network using spectrum in the 3600MHz band. This allows the company to “build a cost-effective network and limit the required additional number of sites, yet still providing wide coverage,” it added in the release.
The consumer release follows Rain’s announcement in February that it would offer its 5G offerings to the public before the end of 2019.
Edit: a previous version of this article stated that Rain is using part of its 4G spectrum for 5G, however this is erroneous. It’s using part of its established 4G data networking infrastructure. Its 4G network uses the 1800MHz – 2600MHz band. 3600MHz is used exclusively for 5G. We’ve amended the article to reflect this.
Feature image: Rain