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Germany’s 5G strategy poses huge fiber challenges for operators

As operators look to virtualized RAN and commoditized, open source base stations to slash the costs of deploying 5G networks, those savings could be cancelled out by the need to invest in large amounts of fiber to backhaul large numbers of cells, and to provide fronthaul links between cells sites and virtualized, centralized baseband units. Some mobile operators, of course, are part of converged groups which already have dense fiber in place and can monetize it with multiple services including access, backhaul and enterprise. NTT Docomo of Japan, for instance, has talked of the relatively low capex cost it expects for 5G because it already has so much fiber installed – in the right places, and of the right quality,…

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