Evolution of RAN: How Zayo is providing C-RAN connectivity

A major wireless carrier has selected Zayo to deploy C-RAN connectivity in two major metro areas. In one market, Zayo will provide an “over the top” fronthaul solution, providing incremental fibers on existing paths to supplement the existing network.

In the second market, Zayo will initiate service for the carrier in a new cluster of sites, solving for high-demand areas by extensively leveraging dense, existing metro dark fiber assets.

Increasingly, wireless carriers are turning to C-RAN architecture to improve network performance while reducing capital expenditures and gaining operating efficiencies. “C-RAN enables wireless carriers to cost-efficiently keep pace with the growing bandwidth demand of their customers,” said Dave Jones, executive vice president, Dark Fiber Solutions at Zayo. “C-RAN, which requires a plentiful supply of dark fiber, is a prime example of second tenant economics for Zayo.”

According to Cisco, global mobile data traffic grew 74 percent last year, with a prediction of compound annual growth rates at more than 50 percent through 2020. To accommodate current and future demand, carriers are taking steps to upgrade their networks now, deploying technologies such as C-RAN and small cell.

“Although 5G has not been fully defined, carriers are implementing solutions to densify their networks for 5G,” added Jack Waters, Zayo CTO. “The migration toward dark fiber solutions, C-RAN, and small cells are foundational for the migration to 5G.”