(Ecofin Agency) - South Africa, like most African countries, faces growing demand for high-speed connectivity amidst accelerated digital transformation. Data service providers need more capacity to meet this demand.
The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA) announced, Tuesday (May 23) it has released the lower 6GHz frequency band (5925-6425 MHz) to allow the provision of high-speed Wi-Fi connectivity.
According to the regulator, the additional spectrum can support more simultaneous connections, offer reduced latency, and provide faster data speeds, resulting in less interference, especially in potentially congested high-density areas and campuses.
The operation was completed through an amendment of Schedule B of ICASA's 2015 radio spectrum regulations. The Regulatory Authority began the process last December, following pressure from Internet service providers in the Rainbow Nation months before.
According to the Wireless Access Providers Association of South Africa (WAPA), the opening of the 6 GHz frequency band is expected to enable the deployment of Wi-Fi 6E, the latest Wi-Fi technology, bringing in as much as $57.76 billion to the country over the next 10 years.
“Overall, the implementation of the lower 6 GHz frequency band is expected to provide significant improvements, more robust and reliable wireless communications, and an enhanced user experience for both the consumers and businesses throughout the country,” the ICASA writes.
Isaac K. Kassouwi