Malaysia’s 5G network achieves nearly 50% coverage: DNB

KUALA LUMPUR: The implementation of 5G network coverage throughout the country has reached almost 50 per cent in populated areas as of the end of 2022, thus surpassing the initial target of 40 per cent, says Digital National Berhad (DNB) chief operating officer Nasution Mohamed.

He said the network has now reached 15 million Malaysians involving 3,900 sites and will reach over 30 million people and businesses when fully implemented.

“DNB is now fully focused on achieving the commitment of 80 per cent of populated areas by the end of 2024 or earlier,“ he said in a statement today.

Nasution said DNB received full support from state and local authorities in accelerating the approval to continue with the implementation, adding that it had managed to complete 5G network implementation at delayed sites over the past month.

So far, he said DNB has achieved more than 90 per cent of coverage in populated areas throughout Kuala Lumpur, Putrajaya and Selangor, in addition to about 50 per cent in Johor, Melaka and Negeri Sembilan.

“Other states are currently in various stages of implementation, and will also achieve full network implementation by 2024 or earlier,“ he said, adding that DNB is working closely with Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) and device manufacturers to promote and encourage 5G usage across the country this year.

He said so far five MNOs namely Celcom Axiata Bhd, Digi Telecommunications Sdn Bhd, Telekom Malaysia Bhd, U Mobile Sdn Bhd and YTL Communications Sdn Bhd (YES) have started providing 5G retail services to more than 20 million of their customers, after signing the access agreements with DNB on Oct 31 last year, while Maxis Bhd’s customers are expected to have access to the service this month.

On 5G compatible devices, Nasution said about eight million devices had been owned by users as of last month and it is expected to double this year and reach 40 million devices by 2030.

“There are 15 device brands that currently offer more than 100 5G compatible devices to users in the Malaysian market, from major models to more economical models,“ he said, adding that this offering coupled with the retail 5G data provided by the relevant MNOs would speed up the use of 5G network among final consumers in the next few years.

He said the use of Malaysia’s 5G network has increased eightfold from 32TB to 253TB per day, with 90,000 simultaneous users as of Dec 30 last year since the respective launch by the five MNOs.

The 5G network has an average download speed of 380 Mbps (which is equivalent to other reported global benchmarks) as opposed to the average 4G download speed of 35 Mbps, he added.

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