Safaricom customers with 5G-supported smartphones in Nairobi’s Kilimani, Lang’ata, South C, Rongai and Westlands are set to enjoy superfast internet services at home and work with the commercial rollout of the fifth-generation network.
In Kilimani, the 5G-ready facilities include the Yaya Centre Mall, Kiluwa Apartments, Silverstone Apartments, Yaya Apartments, Kasuku Court, Abi Allan Apartments and Mango Court Apartments.
Uhuru Gardens in Lang’ata, South C’s Park View Estate and Rangau in Rongai will also enjoy superfast internet speeds.
In Westlands, the service will only be available at the telco’s headquarters.
“Customers in 5G-ready zones can access 5G Wi-Fi by purchasing a 5G router at Sh25,000 plus a setup fee of Sh5,000 and selecting from three packages on offer. Customers will also have the option of signing up for a 36-month contract that will enable them to receive the router for free,” the telco said Thursday.
Other regions with access to the 5G network are Kiambu, Machakos, Kajiado, Kisumu, Mombasa, Kisii and Kakamega.
Safaricom said it has 35 active 5G sites and plans to expand to 200 by March 2023.
Costly 5G smartphones slowed down the telecom’s initial rollout plan of the service, forcing it to shift to Wi-Fi.
5G phones are few and retail at more than Sh100,000 in the Kenyan market.
Currently, supported smartphones include 5G-enabled devices from the Samsung Galaxy S and Fold series, Huawei and Oppo 5G devices. Customers using Apple's iPhones and select 5G-capable Samsung devices will require a software update from the manufacturer to access the superfast network.
The 5G service is a central part of Safaricom’s attempts to expand its data business further to counter slower growth in voice calls revenue.
The company’s introductory data plans include 10Mbps with a usage limit of 300GB at Sh3,499, 40Mbps with a usage limit of 500GB at SH5,999 and 100Mbps with a usage limit of 1TB at Sh14,999.
“Customers will be able to continue using the internet at throttled speeds upon depletion of the allocated usage limit,” said the telco.