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AMN introduces Nigeria’s first base station powered by Starlink backhaul

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In Short:

Africa Mobile Networks (AMN) has launched its first base station using SpaceX’s Starlink for high-speed, low-latency broadband connectivity. By using Starlink terminals, AMN can offer 3G, 4G, and 2G services with plans for 5G in the future. AMN has connected rural communities in Nigeria since 2018 with solar-powered base stations, seeing significant growth in traffic. With over 1200 ARNs in Africa and Latin America, AMN continues to expand its network in multiple countries.

AMN Launches First Base Station with Starlink Backhaul in Nigeria
Africa Mobile Networks (AMN) has announced the launch of the first base station in Nigeria utilizing Low Earth Orbit (LEO) backhaul from SpaceX’s Starlink. In 2023, AMN entered into a commercial agreement with SpaceX to leverage Starlink’s satellite constellation for high-speed, low-latency broadband connectivity for its mobile network base stations.

Satellite-Powered Connectivity

AMN has implemented Starlink terminals for low-latency satellite backhaul, enabling the full potential of its multi-carrier radio access node (the ARN) supporting 3G, 4G, and 2G services. The LEO backhaul also sets the stage for the upcoming rollout of 5G services by the end of 2024.

Starting its rural base station deployments in Nigeria back in 2018, AMN now operates 1600 base stations across the country. Yebu, around 80 km from Abuja, was the initial rural community to receive connectivity through AMN’s solar-powered base station.

Rural Expansion with Solar Base Stations

Since the first connection in November 2018, the Yebu community has witnessed over 9 million voice minutes, with substantial growth observed in 2022 and 2023 post the BTS upgrade to AMN’s ARN. In 2023, the Yebu site handled nearly triple the traffic compared to 2020, according to AMN.

Africa Mobile Networks (AMN)

AMN transitioned into an Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) for Radio Access Network (RAN) equipment in 2020 after acquiring Range Networks. The company now manages over 1200 ARNs in Africa and Latin America, designing and producing BTS specially tailored for solar-powered rural locations, along with offering backhaul solutions.

With over 4000 base stations deployed across Africa and Latin America, AMN is continuously installing new sites in Nigeria, DRC, Cameroon, Madagascar, Ivory Coast, Benin, and Rwanda throughout 2024.

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