Ericsson and Vodafone Spain joined forces into launching a 5G lab in Spain, as the pair aims to continue efforts in boosting the evolution of the next-generation technology in the market.

Dubbed Vodafone 5G Lab, the new facility in Madrid will be open to developers and software companies for the development of use cases based on the latest network technology, designed for the consumer and the enterprise sectors.

In its first year, the laboratory is expected to be used by more than 200 developers and enterprises, Ericsson explained in a statement.

Vodafone 5G Lab will be powered by Ericsson’s 5G Core offering, running independently of the existing 4G network in the premises, and will also house events, roadshows, workshops and challenges designed to assist small companies and start-ups.

The vendor said the hub will “deliver a significant step for 5G in the region” by solidifying the start-up ecosystem while ensuring the entire development chain has access to “the best connectivity” and devices.

Marta de Pablos, head of strategic marketing for 5G at Vodafone Spain, expressed belief the move was essential for the company’s strategy “to continue being pioneers and a reference in the deployment and use of 5G networks and services in Spain”.

The pair began working on a trial of a standalone 5G core in Spain in July, touting the step as a market first.