Picocom contributes to Small Cell Forum specification to drive unified 5G Open RAN
SCF 5G FAPI Release provides common APIs to support interoperability between 5G small cell hardware components and software layers enabling interoperability and preventing fragmentation.
Small Cell Forum (SCF), the telecoms organization making mobile infrastructure solutions available to all, has today published the PHY API for 5G to stimulate a competitive ecosystem for vendors of 5G small cell hardware, software and equipment. The PHY API provides an open and interoperable interface between the physical layer and the MAC layer. 3G and LTE versions are already used in most small cells today.
The specification has been developed through a successful collaboration of companies from across the small cell eco-system, including; Intel, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc., Airspan Networks and Picocom Technology.
5G FAPI is an initiative within the small cell industry to encourage competition and innovation among suppliers of platform hardware, platform software and application software by providing a common API around which suppliers of each component can compete. By doing this, SCF provides an interchangeability of parts ensuring that the system vendors can take advantage of the latest innovations in silicon and software with minimum barriers to entry, and the least amount of custom re-engineering.
Operators are looking for a radically different cost model for 5G networks, one that relies on interoperability and an open, competitive ecosystem. As networks are disaggregated, a critical interface is the fronthaul between a distributed unit (DU) for radio functions and a centralised unit (CU) for protocol stacks and baseband functions. Open specifications such as SCF’s FAPI will enable operators to mix and match protocol stacks, basebands and radios from different vendors, and realize the benefits of deploying disaggregated, virtualized RAN (vRAN) networks.
Read the full press release here.
The specifications for the 5G FAPI PHY API can be found here.
To find out more about 5G FAPI and nFAPI visit here.
Image courtesy of SCF.