The Common Public Radio Interface (CPRI), which is commonly used to connect cell sites and base stations, imposes ultra-low latency and transparent communications requirements that effectively force operators to provide dark fiber to carriers who purchase their services. But using dark fiber for a single service to an end customer is not only a wasteful use of a high-value asset, it is operationally inefficient.
Dark fiber gives no visibility into the services the customer is running, and consequently the operator has no proactive way to monitor and manage the health of these services. Often, operators are alerted to outages when the customer calls to report them, which is, at best, a weak mechanism for support visibility. This paper will outline how new technologies—such as low latency Ethernet and hybrid active/passive networking—enable operators to create CPRI-as-a-Service offering that overcomes this key disadvantage, improves overall management and maintenance of their xHaul natworks, and lets them reclaim valuable unused fiber assets.