Routers have become increasingly important in mobile networks. Playing a part in mobile networks as early as the transition to 3G, routers have become more central in 4G. But while IP-based traffic has been an integral part of core and backhaul aggregation sites, many cell sites have continued to rely on layer-2 (L2) switching.
However, 5G use cases can no longer rely solely on low-cost L2 switches at the cell site level, and the move to layer-3 (L3) routing has become essential.
Indeed, many of 5G’s advanced services, high capacities and low latencies rely on end-to- end L3 routing for more efficient traffic handling and more resilient networks.
For years, cell site routers (CSRs), also known as cell site gateways (CSGs), have been offered as monolithic solutions by a few large vendors. Relatively expensive, these closed systems combine propriety hardware and software.
With the arrival of 5G, disaggregated cell site gateways (DCSG) have emerged as an attractive alternative to this closed approach. Disaggregated routing is an open architecture that decouples the hardware and software elements of CSGs/CSRs.
By deploying best-of-breed DCSGs that fit their dynamic needs, operators are reducing their costs and scaling their networks to support the growing demand for 5G-based services.
DCSGs enable 5G service providers to avoid vendor lock-in and select among more hardware and software choices for varying deployment scenarios.
This white paper will highlight the growing DCSG market, the key operator challenges driving this market, the main elements of DCSG solutions, and two selected deployment configurations. It will also briefly discuss Ceragon’s IP-50FX solution, the industry’s first radio-aware DCSG, and the benefits it delivers to operators.
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