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It's Alive! Verizon & Friends Deliver First xRAN Spec

xRAN is for open source RAN hardware, ORAN is for CPRI, apparently...

Dan Jones

April 13, 2018

1 Min Read
It's Alive! Verizon & Friends Deliver First xRAN Spec

Verizon said late Thursday evening that the xRAN.org consortium has -- as promised -- delivered its first xRAN fronthaul specification.

The organization said at the end of November last year that it would deliver a spec late in 2017 or early this year. The group is now delivering an open source specification to develop fronthaul equipment, according to Verizon. (See First xRAN Spec, Backed by AT&T & Verizon, Expected by Early 2018.)

In February, the xRAN.org said that it was merging with the C-RAN Alliance to create the Open RAN (ORAN) Alliance. A spokeswoman for Verizon, however, told us in an email that the xRAN spec defines an "open Internet-based standard on which future RAN products will be built," while ORAN is an effort to "ensure various proprietary CPRI-based systems can understand one another's languages and operations." (See Major Telcos Pool Efforts to Slash 5G RAN Costs.)

CPRI (Common Public Radio Interface) defines the interface between the baseband control and radio elements of a basestation. As a centralized baseband system controlling multiple remote radio heads has become more common with LTE-Advanced, enabling a more multivendor system has become more important for operators.

The xRAN spec essentially aims to deliver radio access network equipment that will allow operators to use gear from multiple vendors.

Confused yet?

— Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, Light Reading

About the Author(s)

Dan Jones

Mobile Editor

Dan is to hats what Will.I.Am is to ridiculous eyewear. Fedora, trilby, tam-o-shanter -- all have graced the Jones pate during his career as the go-to purveyor of mobile essentials.

But hey, Dan is so much more than 4G maps and state-of-the-art headgear. Before joining the Light Reading team in 2002 he was an award-winning cult hit on Broadway (with four 'Toni' awards, two 'Emma' gongs and a 'Brian' to his name) with his one-man show, "Dan Sings the Show Tunes."

His perfectly crafted blogs, falling under the "Jonestown" banner, have been compared to the works of Chekhov. But only by Dan.

He lives in Brooklyn with cats.

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