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Airtel Kenya, Safaricom extend 5G coverage

By , Kenya Correspondent
Kenya , 03 Nov 2023
Ashish Malhotra, managing director Airtel Kenya.
Ashish Malhotra, managing director Airtel Kenya.

Airtel Kenya and Safaricom announced this week they are expanding 5G coverage across 35 counties.

Kenya's counties are geographical units and the East African country has 47 of them. 

Now, Bomet, Busia, Isiolo, Kitui, Mandera, Migori, Tharaka-Nithi, Trans Nzoia, Homa Bay, West Pokot, Embu, Kirinyaga, Muranga, and Turkana are among the new counties where 5G is now available in towns.

They join Nairobi, Kiambu, Mombasa, Kisumu, Uasin Gishu, Nakuru, Garissa, Kajiado, Kisii, Machakos, Kakamega, Kilifi, Siaya, Kericho, Kwale, Laikipia, Marsabit, Meru, Narok, Nyeri, and Vihiga as counties where Safaricom 5G is already available.

"By increasing 5G coverage, we are enhancing Kenya's best internet network and empowering our customers to start exploring the possibilities of 5G," Peter Ndegwa, president and CEO of Safaricom, said

Airtel also announced plans to build 100 5G sites around the country before the end of the year on Friday. The number of new 5G sites will be expanded from 180 to 221 wards and from 15 to 32 counties.

After the rollout, Airtel's 5G presence will be in: Nairobi, Kiambu, Mombasa, Nakuru, Uasin Gishu, Machakos, Kisumu, Kilifi, Kajiado, Kwale, Kakamega, Bomet, Embu, Homabay, Kericho, Kirinyaga, Laikipia, Meru, Busia, Garissa, Migori, Bungoma, Muranga, Kisii, Kitui, Makueni, Taita Taveta, Tana River, Nyamira, Nyeri, Siaya and Nyandarua.

"The 5G network is focused on providing faster internet and connecting people, businesses, and communities in previously unimaginable ways. Our dedication to innovation and connectivity remains unwavering, and we're thrilled to be a part of this new era of possibilities," said Ashish Malhotra, managing director of Airtel Kenya.

Kenya was one of the first African countries to launch 5G service in 2022. Safaricom, the country's largest telecom, was the first to go commercial with the network in October of that year; Airtel followed in July of this year.

The network was only available in a few spots across the country when it first launched.

Safaricom, on the other hand, stated that it intends to increase the number of 5G sites to more than 150 across nine towns over the next year. Airtel announced that over 370 of its 5G stations were now operational in 16 counties and 180 wards across the country.  

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