Yoigo beats rivals as first to offer LTE in Spain

Yoigo said it will offer commercial LTE services to Spanish subscribers starting in July, making the TeliaSonera unit the first operator to provide the advanced mobile services in Spain.

The network will launch in Madrid and is scheduled to reach 37 per cent of the Spanish population in late 2013, and 75 per cent of the population by the end of 2014. Ericsson is the vendor responsible for the deployment of the LTE network.

The move will give the operator an edge over Telefónica's Movistar and Vodafone Spain, which are already struggling with huge subscriber losses as cash-strapped users turn to low-cost providers.

According to Reuters, France Telecom's Orange Spain also said it will launch LTE services this summer, although no further details have been provided by the other two operators.

Yoigo said the service, to be launched on July 18 in Madrid, will use the 1800 MHz band and will enable average download speeds of 20-40 Mbps. The operator added that there will be no extra charge for users on existing 3G contracts.

Reuters added that Yoigo will spend €200 million ($261 million) over two years on building the network. The operator's market share increased to 6.66 per cent in February from 5.34 percent a year earlier.

For more:
- see this Reuters article
- see this Total Telecom article
- see this Telecoms.com article

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