The current state of 5G in Spain

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Spanish operators have been accelerating 5G deployment plans over the last months and all carriers already offer 5G in the country’s main urban areas as well as in medium-sized cities. In this article, we briefly describe the current state of 5G deployments by Telefonica, Orange, Vodafone and Masmovil.

Telefónica

Spain’s largest operator Telefónica recently announced that it had reached its 5G coverage goals for the year and now provides this technology in over 1,200 towns and cities across the country.

Telefónica said that its 5G network infrastructure currently covers 76% of the country’s population.

With the installation of more than 4,000 nodes, all the provincial capitals, the main Spanish cities and small towns in all the autonomous communities have access to Telefónica’s 5G network.

The operator said that its initial deployment is making use of current sites and infrastructure and, in the mid- and long term, will be complemented by new base stations and small cells according to capacity and coverage requirements.

In September, Telefónica announced the launch of non-standalone (NSA) 5G commercial services in the country.

The telco is offering its 5G service through spectrum in the 3.5 GHz and 1.8-2.1 GHz bands.

Telefónica is initially deploying gear from Ericsson to provide 5G in its main urban areas, while Nokia’s equipment will be used for the deployment of 5G in an upcoming phase of the 5G deployment plan.

Telefónica previously said that it had initially launched 5G services thanks to a technology that combines the deployment of NSA (non-standalone) 5G and DSS (Dynamic Spectrum Sharing). Telefonica said it will launch a standalone (SA) 5G network across Spain once the technology becomes “fully available” after standardization.

Vodafone

Vodafone launched Spain’s first commercial 5G network in Madrid, Barcelona, Valencia, Seville, Malaga, Zaragoza, Bilbao, Vitoria, San Sebastian, La Coruna, Vigo, Gijon, Pamplona, Logrono and Santander in June 2019. The carrier had previously said that it was working with Huawei and Ericsson in the deployment of the 5G network.

The telco’s 5G network currently reaches 21 cities across the country.

Orange

Orange is already offering 5G services in 45 cities across Spain.

Some of the cities covered by Orange’s non-standalone (NSA) 5G network includes Madrid, Barcelona, Valencia, Seville, Malaga, Zaragoza, Logroño and Pamplona.

Orange previously said it expects to launch 5G in 93 towns and cities across Spain before the end of 2020.

The operator had launched commercial 5G services in Spain in September using equipment provided by Ericsson.

The European carrier is currently offering this technology through spectrum in the 3.6-3.8MHz band.

The company said it would launch 5G through standalone (SA) architecture once the Spanish government makes available spectrum in the 700 MHz band, which is expected to occur in the first months of 2021.

Masmovil

In September, Masmovil launched its 5G services for the customers of its Yoigo brand. The carrier said that the 5G service is being offered via a combination of own infrastructure and an agreement with rival operator Orange.

The 5G service is being provided in Alicante, Alcobendas, Almería, Ávila, Barcelona, Hospitalet de Llobregat, Huesca, Jaén, Madrid, Málaga, Melilla, Orense, Salamanca, Sevilla and Valencia

In a second phase, the telco also launched services in the cities of Logroño, Bilbao, San Sebastián and Vitoria.

Earlier this month, Masmovil said that customers of its Masmovil brand will also be able to access 5G in these 19 cities.

The telco provides the service through spectrum in the 3.5GHz band.

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