Makedonski Telekom claims to have launched the first commercial 5G network in North Macedonia. Coverage is currently available in 15 cities and their surrounding areas, namely Stip, Veles, Kavadarci, Negotino, Sveti Nikole, Bitola, Prilep, Krushevo, Ohrid, Struga, Resen, Strumica, Radovish, Gevgelija and Dojran. Deployment of 5G services in Skopje and the surrounding area began this month, and by May all customers in the capital and the wider Skopje region will have access. By the end of October 2022 a total of 26 cities will be covered with 5G technology. Customers within 5G coverage areas will also require a 5G-enabled tariff and a 5G-capable handset – currently the Samsung S21, Xiaomi 11 Lite NE and Motorola Edge 20 Lite devices – to access services.
Preparations for the introduction of the technology began in 2018 with the first laboratory demonstration of 5G, and in 2019 Telekom set up the first real test network through which data transfer speeds of 1Gbps were achieved. ‘Three years ago, we started the first preparations for the technology of the fifth generation, and today we have the first commercial 5G network,’ stated Nikola Ljushev, CEO of Makedonski Telekom, adding: ‘In the past years we have been preparing, investing, testing, building and talking about the future, so now we can say that 5G is here. We have met one of the most important prerequisites for the fourth industrial revolution, and with the new 5G radio frequencies, this technology will reach its true potential, while our customers will get the speeds we are aiming for.’