Claro, the second – and only other – network in Guatemala after Tigo, has claimed a 5G launch not long after its rival. This week it has launched 5G operations with initial coverage in parts of all of Guatemala's 22 departments (or administrative divisions).
Claro is part of the Mexican telecommunications corporation América Móvil, the leading provider of integrated telecommunications services in Latin America and among the world’s largest companies in terms of wireless subscribers.
According to the website BNamericas, Claro has said that its 5G deployment will continue in the coming months with the goal of doubling coverage to reach more people across the country.
As we reported at the time, in early July Tigo Guatemala, part of the Millicom stable of operators, activated what it claimed to be Guatemala’s first 5G network, at the Experience Centre in Cayalá, a purpose-built private city. Tigo’s initial rollout will be 100 sites.
There has been no Guatemala 5G spectrum auction. Operators are taking advantage of their spectrum holdings and existing 4G LTE infrastructure. Whether further spectrum will become available is not known. However, Claro 4G-LTE networks already cover 100% of the Guatemalan population and it aims to reach the same coverage with 5G. The company currently offers customers 20 phones that are 5G-compatible.
América Móvil already offers 5G in the Dominican Republic, Brazil, Peru and Mexico. Guatemala is said to be the first 5G country in Central America.