Movistar has become the first network operator in Spain to activate 26GHz millimetre wave (mmWave) 5G spectrum in its commercial mobile network, having switched on the frequencies – auctioned last December – in Valencia, reports The report says that the InfoAntenas government website shows the first live site is located at the Higher Technical School of Computer Engineering of the Polytechnic University of Valencia, and also indicates that Movistar has formally notified the relevant sector authority – the Ministry of Economic Affairs & Digital Transformation – of its latest 5G deployment.

TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database says that Movistar was the leading bidder in Spain’s auction of 5G-suitable spectrum in the 24.25GHz-27.5GHz (26GHz) band concluded on 21 December 2022, securing five 1×200MHz frequency blocks for EUR20 million (USD21.6 million), compared to Vodafone and Orange each paying EUR8 million for a pair of 1×200MHz concessions. 25% of available national 26GHz spectrum remained unsold, while regional WiMAX fixed wireless network operator GlobeTelecom acquired a 200MHz regional concession covering Castilla and Leon. In February 2023 Movistar’s parent company Telefonica announced the first operational 26GHz 5G mmWave antenna as part of the Mobile World Congress event in Barcelona, although this installation was temporary.

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