Verizon plans to move forward with C-RAN technology deployments

Verizon Wireless (NYSE: VZ) is pushing ahead with plans to deploy Cloud-RAN network architecture and also will keep deploying small cells and distributed antenna systems (DAS) to handle growing capacity requirements in urban markets.

David Small, EVP of wireless operations at Verizon Wireless, told Light Reading the company is moving ahead with its C-RAN plans. "We're not doing a ton now, it's more in the roadmap, but we think it is very important," he said.

C-RAN technology leverages distributed base station and radio head architecture managed by a centralized cloud controller to enable a host of benefits, such as savings on capital expenditures and operating costs, increased asset utilization and savings on energy. For carriers, another key virtue of C-RAN is that it can boost capacity and network efficiency.

Remote radio heads can be deployed throughout the network away from a centralized base station, although they are typically connected via fiber or microwave backhaul to the controller unit.  

Small added that Verizon has started to deploy some remote radios as part of its efforts to add capacity, along with small cells and DAS. Verizon has talked about using small cells, DAS and other in-building solutions to handle rising LTE data traffic in markets like Chicago, New York City and San Francisco.

"We're really going aggressively in that manner," Small said of the DAS and small cell efforts, although he did not say how much of Verizon's capital expenditures are related to its densification efforts.

Verizon has been looking at using C-RAN for several years, as Light Reading notes, but has not gone into great detail on its plans, including its vendor partners. Verizon Communications CFO Fran Shammo has mentioned C-RAN technology as something that's "out there" as a way to ease network congestion.

For more:
- see this Light Reading article 

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