5G Bands supported by MTN and Airtel (Nigeria)

5G Bands supported by MTN and Airtel (Nigeria)

After 5G licenses were given out in 2023, two of Nigeria’s biggest Telecom companies have been hard at work rolling out 5G across the country. So in the article, we’ll look at the 5G Bands supported by MTN and Airtel in Nigeria.

5G is the current generation of cellular network communication. It is currently the fastest network generation in history. But before we take off, a bit of a refresher is needed.

What are network frequency bands?

A network frequency band can be defined as a collection or range of frequencies. These bands are then assigned to different network operators or providers.

It is these bands of frequencies that cellular network and Internet service providers use to transmit their network signals to their subscribers.

So 5G was announced around 5 years ago if my memory serves me correctly although it wasn’t until last year that it became available in Nigeria. I have been looking for the 5G bands supported by MTN and Airtel because this is important information. If a person goes out to anywhere to buy a 5G device that isn’t supported by MTN or Airtel, they’ll be stuck with 4G or even 3G despite owning a 5G phone.

Now as we all know, or should know rather, 5G is divided into 2 tiers:

  1. Sub-6GHz 5G
  2. mmWave 5G

Sub-6GHz is basically 4G LTE Pro Max for lack of a better descriptive term. It’s simply faster 4G. Another name for Sub-6GHz is Non Stand Alone (NSA) 5G. mmWave 5G on the other hand is true 5G. Those crazy next Gen network speeds that you see are only available on mmWave 5G. It is also known as Stand Alone (SA) 5G.

When it comes to 5G bands, Sub-6GHz occupies band n1 to n99, whilst mmWave 5G occupies band n257 to n262.

5G Bands supported by MTN and Airtel

The following 5G bands supported by MTN and Airtel in Nigeria are:

These are the 5G bands that are supported by MTN and Airtel in Nigeria.

Bands n1, 3, 7, 8, 20, 28 and 78 seem to be really popular around the world so it isn’t out of place that MTN would be supporting them. The same can also be said for Airtel Nigeria as well. They support all of the aforementioned 5G bands except Band n20 and n28. Although it would seem that we only have access to NSA 5G for now.

So if you’re going to be using Airtel. There’s no band n20 or n28 support at the moment. It could come later but you never know. So as it stands, MTN has the better band support.

I’m not entirely sure which bands they’re using for specific regions but hopefully I’ll find out sooner or later.

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