The mobile penetration rate in Spain was 126.5% in September 2011. When compared with OECD countries in 2009, it ranked 19th of 34 countries (111.2 subscriptions in Spain compared to an OECD average of 102.6 subscribers).
As for mobile broadband service providers, their market shares measured in numbers of subscribers had remained relatively stable until 2007. In that year the mobile market was opened to virtual network operators (MVNOs). They, together with the fourth network operator Yoigo, which started operating in 2006, consistently gained market shares. By November 2011 Yoigo’s share was 6.3% (or 5.13% measured in numbers of subscribers), while the market leader (the mobile telephony arm of the fixed incumbent) held a 40.09% share and its main competitor Vodafone 28.12%.
Large-scale deployment of long-term evolution (LTE) technology has not taken place yet, even though Telefonica and Vodafone did conduct trials or provide large corporations with pre-commercial services in the second half of 2011. Deployments on a larger scale are expected to take place in early 2012.