In a significant move to enhance mobile coverage in Mexico, Telefónica, a leading telecommunications company, has joined forces with Nova Labs. This partnership focuses on using blockchain technology, specifically through the Helium Network, to reduce infrastructure costs and improve mobile network reach.
The collaboration will see the deployment of Helium Mobile Hotspots in key areas, including Mexico City and Oaxaca. These hotspots, functioning as nodes, are designed to support the Internet of Things (IoT) devices by extending wireless network coverage. This initiative is particularly beneficial in remote areas, where traditional cellular coverage is limited. The integration with Helium’s decentralized network allows these hotspots to authenticate wireless activities, thereby broadening the network’s reach.
One of the most notable advantages for users is the potential for improved connectivity, especially during peak times. Telefónica aims to alleviate network congestion by diverting data traffic to the Helium ecosystem. This means that devices within the range of a Helium hotspot will automatically switch from Telefónica’s network to the Helium network, ensuring smoother connectivity.
Telefónica assures user authentication through their SIM cards and retains complete control over customer activities with its management system. José Haro, Telefónica’s chief wholesale officer, emphasizes that this endeavor in Mexico is crucial for assessing the performance and customer satisfaction of this technology. If successful, the strategy might be integrated into Telefónica’s mobile networks across various regions.
Operating under the brand Movistar in Mexico, Telefónica held 18.3% of the country’s mobile market share in 2022. Headquartered in Spain, the company has a presence in over 17 countries in Europe and the Americas. In addition to this blockchain initiative, Telefónica has been active in the Web3 space, having enabled cryptocurrency payments in its online tech marketplace and developing blockchain solutions through Telefónica Tech, its technology division.