The Prospect for a Services-Led Model in Telecoms

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By Don Alusha | 1Q 2022 | IN-6404


Disaggregation Requires Reaggregation


Ecosystem disaggregation raises several challenges. For example, in 5G networks, if core networks and base stations are disaggregated, then they must be reaggregated for performance, security, and lifecycle management. This goes beyond the traditional interoperability supported by 3GPP. Feature sets, roadmaps, different implementation options, and operability concepts should be aligned adequately between suppliers of different components, namely the Radio Unit (RU), Distributed Unit (DU), and Centralized Unit (CU) in Open-Radio Access Network (O-RAN). O-RAN compliant networks will have to coexist with non-O-RAN compliant parts, much like Cloud Radio Access Network (RAN) and 5G Core (5GC) need to co-exist with purpose-built hardware, at least in the early stages of adoption. The challenge is exacerbated by mazes of partnerships, and a raft of vendors and Communication Service Providers (CSPs). The process of disaggregation is reciprocal with a reaggregation/integration effort required to achieve interoperability and to manage operational costs.

Furthermore, with O-RAN and 5GC, t…

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