Econet reached out to inform us that all its customers have been whitelisted for 5G. Before you could not access 5G on Econet even if you owned a 5G capable device. Well, according to Econet that’s no longer the case. If you have a 5G capable smartphone you should be able to connect to 5G at any of their locations with 5G. [Update] You still need to contact Econet to get your SIM card activated.
Not all devices will be able to connect right now
In my previous article I mentioned that 5G in Zimbabwe is still under the Proof of Concept testing stage so coverage is very limited and so is device support. When it comes to device support this is how it is looking.
Most Chinese brands can connect to Econet’s 5G out of the box. I managed to test Tecno and Huawei so you can be sure that the 5G versions of these brands will connect with no issues.
Econet recently finished tests with Apple and the iOS 16 update brought the 5G feature to 5G-capable Apple devices. So all 5G capable iPhones and iPads should be good to connect to Econet’s 5G now.
At the moment of writing this article, Samsung devices are still undergoing tests so they may not be able to connect to the 5G network. However, Econet assures us that they are in the very last stages of testing so the wait will not be long.
What is interesting about device support is that for a couple of brands, access to 5G is coming via software patches or updates. So for some of you, it’s probably a case of your phone’s software being outdated and needing an update for you to get the 5G working. So here is a checklist that you can do before trying out 5G.
- Ensure your device is 5G capable
- Make sure your software is up to date
- Restart your device
- Buy some mobile data
- Make sure your location has 5G coverage
Where is the 5G?
Econet now has 22 operational 5G base stations scattered all over Zimbabwe and the sites are:
- Sam Levy’s
- Econet Park
- RGM Airport
- Holiday Inn (Harare)
- Club chambers
- ZESA HQ
- Makoni shops (Chitungwiza)
- Zengeza Main
- NSSA House Bulawayo
- Anchor house Bulawayo
- Econet house Bulawayo
- NRZ Bulawayo
- Rainbow Hotel
- Mimosa House
- NRZ Victoria Falls
- Spar (OK) Victoria Falls
- CABS Gweru
- Rothbat Building