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eCPRI: MNOs require open fronthaul standards and multi-vendor solutions to reduce deployment costs

Roberto Kompany Senior Analyst, Research

"The new eCPRI standard reduces fronthaul bandwidth requirements, but much of it is vendor-specific, which means MNOs cannot mix RRH and BBU components from multiple vendors."

The fronthaul bandwidth requirements of using the CPRI standard become uneconomical when considering LTE-Advanced Pro. The eCPRI standard was developed to reduce this burden by introducing functional splits within Layers 1,2 and 3. However, this report explains that eCPRI is falling short in terms of what mobile network operators (MNOs) need for cost-effective cloud-RAN deployments.

This report provides:

  • an analysis of why the CPRI standard is inadequate for mobile networks
  • a description of the functional splits that are defined in the eCPRI standard and how they help reduce fronthaul bandwidth requirements
  • an analysis of why MNOs need open standards and the implications of inaction
  • key recommendations for the industry.