Unlike other countries where it has been much more widespread for some time, the IPv6 protocol has arrived in Spain several years late. But the important thing is that, finally, there is an operator who IPv6 deployment is complete across your mobile network.
This is Movistar, which started a few months ago and has just been completed. This total deployment has also been carried out for O2, so that customers of both operators with an Android mobile can now enjoy the advantages of this protocol throughout Spain. In fixed broadband, it will arrive at the end of the year.
If you have an iPhone, you will have to wait
Although the start of the deployment was officially announced in January, it was in November of last year when Movistar, through the Dual Stack functionality, began to provide IPv6 addresses to mobile line users who had the ‘telefonica.es’ APN configured on a device IPv6/IPv4 compatible.
Image | telephone
The operator, which at the beginning of the year had 600,000 accesses over IPv6, has just announced that it has already completed the deployment of IPv6 throughout its mobile network, also for O2. Currently, Movistar has a total of 4 million accesses over IPv6 and it is planned to also reach all fixed broadband before the end of the year (the tests have already started).
Movistar has therefore become the first operator in Spain to address the Internet traffic of its mobile users with IPv6, in any location and for all generations of mobile telephony (2G, 3G, 4G and 5G).
Right now, IPv6 is only supported by Android terminals, but Movistar has confirmed that throughout the last quarter of 2023 it will also be available for iOS. To check if your Android mobile already has it activated, do the following:
Enter the ‘Settings’ of your mobile. Click on the section ‘Networks and Internet’ and, within ‘Mobile Network’toca ‘Access Point Name’. Check that it appears APN Movistar ‘telefónica.es’. If not, tap on APN and add it.
All Android terminals sold by Movistar since April 2021 have the telefonica.es APN preconfigured as Dual Stack. If this is not your case, you will have to configure it manually by following these steps:
Touch the APN to be able Edit access point. Credit ‘APN protocol’ and change to ‘IPv4/IPv6’.
And if you want to check if you are accessing the content with IPv4 or IPv6, you can do it with a test like https://ipv6-test.com/ or https://ipv6test.google.com/, or through a page showing the IP with which it is accessed, such as www.cualesmiip.com or www.whatismyip.com.
Advantages of the IPv6 protocol
As Movistar explains, the main benefit of using IPv6 is that, by eliminating the usual intermediate address translation steps in IPv4, it provides faster access speeds to native content in IPv6 (Most of the Big Tech companies like Google, Microsoft or Facebook already publish in IPv6).
In addition, this protocol simplifies addressing and network architectures, increasing the security and scalability of applications, which are distributed through cloud microservices rather than in large, single blocks.
On the other hand, on the business side, IPv6 makes it possible to give services that cannot be provided with IPv4 such as home IoT mesh networks (with the Matter/Thread standard promoted by Apple, Google, Amazon and Samsung) or the segmentation of corporate networks with SRv6 technology (Segment Routing over IPv6).
Cover Image | Gerd Altman
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