Operator Orange Côte d’Ivoire has opened its Orange 5G Lab, devoted to digital professionals, start-ups and businesses, at an event attended by Mr Amadou Coulibaly, Minister of Communication and Digital Economy, and a number of senior figures from Orange.
Orange 5G Lab Abidjan offers services and support to economic players devised with expert partners such as Huawei, Nokia or ZTE.
The free and customized Orange 5G Lab system is built around two concepts. The first is allowing economic players to discover new possibilities enabled by 5G, and the way it could positively impact their activities. The second is supporting, with the help of Orange 5G experts, innovative businesses keen to experiment with 5G’s potential for their product or service.
This site will host a 5G demo space for different business sectors, conferences, training, co-working sessions, co-innovation and practical 5G application sessions.
Jérôme Hénique, CEO of Orange Middle East and Africa (OMEA) explains: “Like the Orange Digital Centre opened last year, the Orange 5G Lab will allow faster adoption of this technology by local businesses. They will not only be able to benefit from the expertise and tools available here in Abidjan, but they will also have access to feedback from more than 1,500 businesses and local authorities that have had access to an Orange 5G Lab worldwide – including 127 that have already been able to set up testing based around their own practical examples.”
Orange has already opened 15 Orange 5G Labs, including two in Africa.
This announcement follows hard on the heels of the news that Smart Africa’s capacity building arm, the Smart Africa Digital Academy (SADA), is expanding its footprint in Africa, with Côte d’Ivoire being the latest country to benefit from the digital skills development initiative. Launched in partnership with the Ivorian Ministry of Communication and Digital Economy, the initiative aims to help nurture the country’s nascent digital sector through provision of digital skills.
Smart Africa is an alliance of 32 African countries, international organisations and global private sector players tasked with furthering Africa’s digital agenda. As well as Côte d’Ivoire, national digital academies will soon be rolled out in Burkina Faso, Tunisia, Kenya and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
SADA is also embarking on a programme to provide digital skills for African youth and entrepreneurs.