Telefónica, Ericsson and Qualcomm Launch First Commercial Mobile 5G mmWave Network in Spain at Mobile World Congress 2023, Barcelona.


  • Telefónica, Ericsson and Qualcomm collaborated to launch the first commercial mobile 5G mmWave network in Spain during the mobile industry’s largest connectivity event.
  • The deployment is poised to create a unique 5G user experience for Mobile World Congress visitors.
  • Qualcomm will showcase the broad range of global 5G mmWave devices powered by leading Snapdragon® mobile platforms.

Feb 17, 2023, Barcelona – Telefónica, Ericsson and Qualcomm Technologies, Inc., today announced the launch of the first commercial mobile 5G millimeter (mmWave) network in Spain at Mobile World Congress 2023, Barcelona.

This technology milestone will allow compatible user devices partners to access the Ericsson-powered Telefónica 5G mmWave network during the event. At the event, Qualcomm Technologies will showcase the broad range of global 5G mmWave devices powered by Snapdragon mobile platforms that drive industry advancement forward.

The use of 5G mmWave spectrum is the optimum way to achieve high speeds and high capacity and to deliver the best 5G experience in crowded areas. Especially interesting is the role of 5G mmWave in the area of Fixed Wireless Access, digitalization and Industry 4.0, providing extremely high-performance coverage and enabling a completely new range of use cases to be explored. Based on its high network capacity and extraordinary performance boost, this 5G mmWave deployment will enable an extraordinary 5G user experience for Mobile World Congress visitors to Hall 3 at La Fira allowing the ultra-fast mobile connectivity at lower latency that will transform the way they realize mobile connectivity.

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Telefónica is the only service provider in Spain that has acquired a full 1 GHz spectrum, which will make Telefónica the first company able to offer in the future download speeds beyond 5 Gbps and upload speeds of 1 Gbps. This massive spectrum will enable the use of bandwidth-intensive applications like multiview cameras and user-generated content in crowded sport venues like football stadiums. It will enhance immersive experiences such as VR and AR and provide industry and manufacturing companies with the critical communications tools they need to go fully wireless and become more competitive, by adopting technologies such as artificial intelligence and automation in a fully flexible environment.

The 5G mmWave deployment will cover Hall 3 of the Mobile World Congress Barcelona event using ample mmWave spectrum bandwidth secured by Telefónica from the recent Spanish spectrum auction. Ericsson is providing its mmWave radio AIR 5322 and high-capacity RAN Processor 6651 coverage to enable the 5G millimeter coverage. The radio access network equipment are powered by Ericsson Silicon chipset, enabling industry-leading lightweight and energy efficiency advantages, as well as unique performance and innovative features.

Qualcomm Technologies 5G mmWave device bar at its booth (Hall 3, 3E10) will demonstrate 5G mmWave devices powered by Snapdragon mobile platforms, including commercial premium smartphones, PCs, CPEs, hotspots, and more.

Millimeter band connectivity will allow for multiple benefits, targeting areas with intensive traffic needs like hot spots in indoor and outdoor environments, enhancing existing city macro sites, densification of urban and suburban street sites or using of macro tower sites to extend coverage of fiber-like fixed wireless access service as a complement to fiber deployment in difficult areas.

“This commercial deployment of 5G mmWave services we are launching as a result of our work with Ericsson and Qualcomm Technologies, along with the massive spectrum that Telefónica has obtained in the last auction, is the last milestone in a series of 5G long term projects that Telefónica has been developing in collaboration with enterprises and institutions in the last 3 years,” said Gerardo Rovira, access radio director at Telefónica España. “It goes a long way in showing the commitment that Telefónica has in the development and leadership of a strong 5G ecosystem that will be a key factor in bringing compelling services for both the public and private sectors.”

“Our collaboration with Telefónica and Qualcomm Technologies to achieve this 5G mmWave technological leap in Spain will dramatically change the experience of mobile connectivity for consumers and enterprises, making it faster, more accessible and more reliable,” said Somaya El-Marrakchi, head of networks, Ericsson Iberia. “Millimeter band opens a new paradigm in the deployment of 5G technology that will provide operators a powerful tool to complement existing network deployment strategy to increase performance and capacity with different needs.”

“We are proud to continue working with industry partners such as Telefónica and Ericsson to push boundaries of connectivity and enable robust consumer experiences,” said Dino Flore, vice president, technology, Qualcomm Europe, Inc. “Being able to show the first commercial deployment of commercial 5G mmWave services in Spain at MWC 2023 Barcelona is an example of another significant milestone for 5G mmWave in Europe.”

Telefónica is one the largest telecommunications service providers in the world. The company offers fixed and mobile connectivity as well as a wide range of digital services for residential and business customers. With more than 383 million customers, Telefónica operates in Europe and Latin America.

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