Radio Interface

Project Leader

Georg WANNEMACHER (Lead), Deutsche Telekom


Contact: Klaus MOSCHNER, NGMN Office (office(at)


ETSI ISG ORI (Open Radio equipment Interface)
Chairman: Tim FROST, Vodafone




The objective of this project was to develop the implementation recommendations for open internal interface of radio base stations between BaseBandUnit (BBU) and the RadioRemoteHead (RRH).
By connecting with RRH via optical fibers, operators can reduce the cost of RF cabling.
This project has reached TG2 (Closure).


In 2010, the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) launched the Industry Specification Group Open Radio Equipment Interface (ISG ORI) with the objective to develop and to maintain the specifications based on the implementation requirements developed within the NGMN Alliance.


A Memorandum of Understanding was signed between the NGMN Alliance and ETSI echoing the strong support from NGMN in launching the ISG ORI.
See NGMN Alliance - ETSI MoU

Backhaul Evolution (P-BEV)

Project Leaders

Miguel ALVAREZ (Lead), FT/Orange
Lance HILEY/Julius ROBSON (Co-Lead Small Cells), Cambridge Broadband Networks Ltd.


Contact: Klaus MOSCHNER, NGMN Office (office(at)




Goal of this project is to provide detailed frames of reference for industry exchanges on adapted backhaul solutions for small cells environments and integrated QoS management solutions.


In the "small cells" stream of the project, the objective is to adequately and precisely describe the transport needs of such RAN equipment, to develop a list of requirements to be fulfilled by potential solutions, and to describe example scenarios. The overall aim of this is to facilitate exchanges between operators and vendors and to stimulate this approach for LTE network densification (from the backhaul side).


In the "integrated QoS" stream of the project, the objective is to provide a clear description of an open, standard mechanism to integrate service- and transport-level QoS mechanisms and facilitate information exchanges about the available transport resources. Furthermore, the project aims to provide this input to SDOs so that a comprehensive standard can be developed if the need for it is identified. As a global objective, the goal is to avoid the fragmentation of the industry into multiple proprietary solutions, to improve the flexibility of operators to introduce improved QoS features in their networks and to stimulate vendor developments in this domain.


Main Deliverables:

  • Framework description of adapted backhaul solutions for Small Cells and associated requirements
  • Generic description of integrated QoS mechanisms and proposed standardization targets


Project Leaders

Kevin LINEHAN (Lead), Andrew/CommScope
Paolo GIANOLA (Co-Lead), Telecom Italia


Contact: Klaus MOSCHNER, NGMN Office (office(at)




Ambiguity in antenna specifications resulting from a lack of standards can make it difficult for RF engineers and supply chain managers to competently compare product from various vendors. Miscommunication during the procurement process on specification definitions and compliance to them is likely commonplace.


Introduction of globally accepted antenna standards into the wireless industry will facilitate more informed and accurate cost/benefit decisions on antenna selection. Standardization in the marketplace will potentially drive quality and improved performance into antenna products and result in positive impact to coverage, capacity and QoS.


The Project BASTA generating an NGMN whitepaper that recommends base station antenna (BSA) standards, and facilitates an appropriate forum or organization to further develop them and promote their adoption, would be beneficial to the wireless community and the NGMN partners.


Scope and Objectives:


The result of the project on Base Station Antenna Standards is an Implementation Recommendation which helps the telecommunication industry to establish industry-wide accepted antenna standards for the benefit of its customers.


The scope of the project will be to:

  • Collect existing base station antenna standards
  • Develop specific recommendations on standards
  • Identification of an organisation to take ownership of the standards development
  • Facilitate the transfer of the standards work to the identified organisation


Project Leaders

Clark CHEN (Lead), China Mobile
Kiho LEE (Co-Lead), Korean Telecom
Sungo MOON (Co-Lead), SK Telecom
Philippe SEHIER(Co-Lead), Alcatel-Lucent


Contact: Klaus MOSCHNER, NGMN Office (office(at)


Scope and Objectives:


Mobile operators face increasingly challenges in the recent years in the following areas:

  • Fast increasing data traffic but flatten APRU: 50x data traffic in future
  • High CAPEX/OPEX of RAN
  • Surging power consumption
  • Dynamic workload and low BS utilization rate
  • Interference problem limits network capacity


Mobile operators must find innovative RAN solution to resolve the above challenges with much lower CAPEX/CAPEX to keep profitable in the mobile internet era.


In the view of these challenges, the project addresses the following scope and objectives:

  • Determine the major issues of traditional RAN and possible changes to enable sustainable growth in the mobile internet era.
  • Define the future RAN implementation and deployment methodology which can satisfy the surging mobile data traffic need, with low bit-cost, high spectral efficiency, high energy efficiency, flexibility multiple standards support based on emerging technologies, concept and tools.
  • Investigate the benefits, concerns, feasibility, technical challenges of these emerging technologies, concept and tools, including but not limited to: multi-antenna array, common baseband unit, radio signal transportation on fiber, centralised processing, co-operative radio, and real-time Cloud computing infrastructure etc. in future RAN implementation and deployment.
  • Determine graduate upgrade methodology to incrementally change traditional RAN infrastructure toward future RAN infrastructure.

Main deliverables of the project Centralised RAN (P-CRAN) are/will be:

  • Report on today's RAN cost structure information
  • General requirements definition for low-cost, high bandwidth and power efficient RAN implementation and deployment
  • Solutions for new RAN implementation and deployment methodology based on emerging technologies
  • Liaisons, contributions to relevant SDOs and industry bodies


Project Leaders

Jean-Pierre CHARLES (Lead), FT/Orange
Jan ELLSBERGER (Co-Lead), Ericsson


Contact: Klaus MOSCHNER, NGMN Office (office(at)




Mobile Networks are becoming increasingly complex and numerous. The transition to future networks is dominated by the challenge of heterogeneous radio access technologies and requirements.


Network Operators require solutions that demonstrate a safe transition to future network technologies, solutions that scale profitably, including other technologies (e.g. Wi-Fi) and also consider the smooth operation of heterogeneous networks. Otherwise operators and vendors will be facing such implementation barriers that stacking of the networks will be delayed or rejected whatever would be the benefit from a radio capacity perspective.

With the introduction of LTE accelerating new models for the usage of mobile broadband: video, applications, uploading … In other words an increase of various different broadband services the need of efficient offloading access technologies is imminent. On localized areas, various technologies will need to coexist in order to deliver the required bandwidth and performances, as well as the need to support an increasing demand of capacity.


The project will focus on LTE as the centre of investigations considering Wi-Fi and pprioritizing Wi-Fi over small cell and Femto cell integration and operations.


Main deliverable of the project Heterogeneous Networks Evolution and Operations (P-HEVOR) will be a whitepaper

  • highlighting the interfaces between systems of interest
  • O&M expectations from operators point of view on the integration of systems
  • communicating the requirements and recommendation to the industry
  • List the existing standardization initiatives in the area of heterogeneous networks





Project Leaders

Xin MA (Lead), China Mobile
Neil MCGOWAN (Co-Lead), Ericsson


Contact: Klaus MOSCHNER, NGMN Office (office(at)




There are two trends for future antenna deployment: multi-antenna tech application for both TDD&FDD LTE systems and co-site requirements for 2G/3G/LTE operators. Thus, operators will face great challenges on antenna deployment with larger antenna size. Two major issues can be observed in base station antenna deployment:

  • Operators having different antenna specifications, even for the exact same frequency bands.
  • Multiple wireless networks using different antennas, even if co-located and close in frequency of operation.


This resulted a multitude of different base station antenna versions, which not increased cost for vendors, but also resulted in operators' increased OPEX due to a variety of antenna panels on the tower. In this respect it would be beneficial for the industry to align some optimal common base station antenna solutions or modes.


The scope and objectives of this projects are:

  • Share experiences and solutions of compact antenna designs and deployment
  • Share experiences and solutions of co-sited multi-system antennas with wide frequency bandwidth supporting as many 2G/3G/LTE bands as possible
  • Conclude some antenna application modes for future antenna deployment in different scenarios based on the experience sharing


Main deliverables of the project Multi Antenna Technology (P-MATE) are/will be:

  • Smaller size antenna design solutions
  • FDD&TDD co-site solutions
  • Future antenna requirements


Contact: Philipp DEIBERT, NGMN Office (office(at)


Global carbon emissions are further increasing and every country and industry is affected by the negative effects of the climate change. The IC industry currently generates around 2% of the world-wide carbon emissions.


Many measures have already been taken by Telecom Operators and Vendors e.g. in the area of equipment power efficiency to improve the green footprint. Furthermore, ICT players have the opportunity to introduce advanced communication technologies that will help other industries to drive sustainability.


The NGMN Alliance and its Partners place a strong emphasis on the development of the most energy efficient next generation technology and on the extension of the industry's green footprint. Therefore, the NGMN Green Telco Initiative brings together NGMN Partners who run projects and have started activities to protect the environment.


Please find below a selection of NGMN Partners with an outline of their solutions and insights.
Further information can be received through NGMN Office at office(at)


Please find below a viewpoint from Philipp Deibert (NGMN) on Sustainability and Energy Efficiency for download Sustainability and Energy Efficiency


NGMN Advisors represent leading universities and research institutes in the area of mobile communications. They participate in projects and activities of NGMN and add their research perspective on innovation. NGMN Advisors are also encouraged to build their own network on training and research, e.g. building a talent pool in research.


Current NGMN Advisors are:



Further Information about the activities carried out by the NGMN Advisors in technology areas in scope of NGMN, can be found in the Partner Portal.
Projects and Publications (Journal Papers, PhD Theses, Final Reports, etc.) from our NGMN Advisors in addition to contact information of advisors researchers is available in our Partner Portal under the Innovation Dialogue Work Group.


Innovation Day


NGMN held an Innovation Day in Stockholm in September 2011 on the topics of “Reconfigurable Radio/SDR”, “Cognitive Radio (CR)” and “Various Approaches for Efficient and Flexible Use of Spectrum” for mobile broadband services. The conference proved to be a unique platform for all stakeholders – industry, academia, regulators - to present and discuss the latest research findings and technology approaches. Additionally, telecom operators and manufacturers provided their view on the commercial viability of such new technologies. Other topics of interest touched included Green Radio and Electromagnetic Compatibility for the Environment, ECE or EMC (electromagnetic compatibility).


Following the 2011 Innovation Day, the NGMN established the “NGMN Innovation Dialogue”. The objective is to continue the discussion on some of the most interesting challenges which were presented at the Innovation Day.


The first area to focus in a first round of discussions for the Innovation Dialogue is the topic "Cognitive Radio and Small Cells" - as agreed in the Innovation Day 2011 concluding panel session. The NGMN Office will enable the dialogue as efficiently as possible; providing input and progress reports and facilitate the discussions within the NGMN Alliance.


Advisory Activities:


NGMN participates as External Advisory Board (EAB) member in EU Research Projects.


Currently, NGMN is member of the EAB of the project SAPHYRE (


SAPHYRE will demonstrate how equal-priority resource sharing in wireless networks improves spectral efficiency, enhances coverage, increases user satisfaction, leads to increased revenue for operators, and decreases capital and operating expenditures.


Other research related activities of interest:

  • Horizon 2020:
    Horizon 2020 will tackle societal challenges by helping to bridge the gap between research and the market. This market-driven approach will include creating partnerships with the private sector and Member States to bring together the resources needed.
  • Net!Works:
    Net!Works is contributing to preparation of "Horizon 2020" on
    - Research priorities
    - Implementation of the program
    Cooperation with other European Technology Platforms towards a white paper on Innovation
    - How to cooperate on Innovation
    - How to improve bringing research results to the market


Project Leaders

Feifei LOU (Lead), China Mobile
LEI Cao (Co-Lead), China Mobile


Contact: Klaus MOSCHNER, NGMN Office (office(at)




As the LTE technology evolves from 3GPP standardisation to real deployment by global operators, two issues are brought up to our attention which might impact the future success of the LTE global ecosystem:

  • UE chipset and implementation economy of scale
  • Global roaming support


Therefore, a single UE product implementation platform would be beneficial that supports all global operators' near term LTE deployments scenarios including both FDD and TDD, and plus necessary legacy network support for needed fallback mechanisms, multi-band devices may not meet the LTE deployment timeline requirements due to the RF limitation.



NGMN will work with UE (component) vendors to assess expectations and technology availability, both for near term and longer time frame of 2-3 years ahead, for multimode multiband UEs as soon as possible, so that a clear understanding on those detail trade-offs are visualized for LTE devices.


Scope and Objectives:


The scope of the project P-MBMM will be:

  • Collection of NGMN operators' input on their frequency bands for LTE deployment
  • Working with UE (component) vendors (potentially through multiple global organisations) for actions and results
  • Communication of findings to the relevant ecosystem players in terms of requirements and feasibility, and publication of findings


The objective of the project Requirements for Multi-Band, Multi-Mode UEs (P-MBMM) is to develop multimode multiband UE requirements and study the feasibility from operators and vendors such that a potential single UE platform supporting all feasible regional and global LTE/legacy bands that could be produced.





Project Leaders

Miguel ALVAREZ (Lead), Orange/FT
Frederic JOUNAY (Co-Lead), Orange/FT


Contact: Klaus MOSCHNER, NGMN Office (office(at)

This project aims to define requirements and to assess innovative ALL-IP transport solutions facilitating optimum backhauling (including self-backhauling).


It comprises a set of project streams:


  • Deployment Scenarios and Protocol Stacks (led by Alcatel-Lucent and Nokia Siemens Networks)
  • Backhaul Dimensioning (led by Cambridge Broadband Networks)
  • End-to-End Backhaul QoS (led by Huawei with Cambridge Broadband Networks, NEC, Tellabs)
  • Backhaul Security (led by Alcatel-Lucent)

Main Deliverables

Main deliverables of the project are/will be:


  • LTE backhauling deployment scenarios
  • Transport Provisioning for LTE
  • Quality of Service
  • Security
  • Phase/Time Synchronisation


Project Leader

Mohammad SHAHBAZ (Lead), KPN/E-Plus

Scope & Objectives

The NGMN Alliance has been carrying out Executive Workshops on Devices since 2007 with the objective to jointly review the next generation device roadmap with NGMN Partners, to identify gaps to vendors' or standards' planning and to agree on action plans. The overall goal is to ensure synchronised availability of end-user devices and network elements. In 2011, the 5th Executive Workshop on Devices will be held.


To ensure a solid and structured basis for tracking NGMN milestones for device availability, the workshop is based on a survey carried out prior to each workshop. The results of the survey will be presented and discussed during the Executive Workshop on Devices.


Project Leaders

Jinhan SONG (Lead), SK Telecom
Nathalie JOLLIVET (Co-Lead), Orange/FT

Scope & Objectives

The scope of this project is to


  • Understand the current status of QoS management capabilities enabled by SDOs and provided by suppliers
  • Understand the views toward QoS of industry parties (operators, vendors, 3rd parties)
  • Identify potential gaps between requirements for QoS and existing QoS capabilities
  • Explore how to implement QoS in networks efficiently with regards to technology and cost perspectives
  • Consider ways to solve potential barriers of implementing QoS (technical gaps, regulatory issues, etc.)

The objective of this project is to ensure the easy and cost effective implementation of end-to-end Quality of Service in LTE/EPC networks.


ZHANG Dawei (Chair), China Mobile
Philippe BESSON (Vice-Chair), FT / Orange

Contact: Klaus MOSCHNER, NGMN Office (office(at)

Scope & Objectives

NGMN recognises that trial and validation activities are vital to accelerate the development of the NGMN eco system and its services by taking into account the lessons learned from other/previous technologies. Concerted trial initiatives will lead to accelerated development cycles and early time to market.


The NGMN Alliance has established a Trial project to accompany, guide and leverage industry activities and initiatives in the field of testing and validation of NGMN candidate technologies.


Objectives of the NGMN Trial project: 

  • Set up a framework to enable open collaboration between NGMN Partners and external trial initiatives;
  • Consolidate and evaluate trial results for different NGMN candidate technologies;
  • Provide evidence of key technology capabilities in technical field trials and friendly customer trials;
  • Benchmark technologies  against common NGMN requirements and recommendations (White Paper 3.0).


NGMN has not setup or execute trials on its own, but has leveraged existing trial initiatives of NGMN Partners or other industry forums based on an open and transparent collaboration framework. In a first stage, the NGMN Trial project generated common trial requirements and test cases and provides these to the respective trial initiatives for consideration to get results in a consistent manner. In the second stage, the Trial project accumulated specific trial results delivered from those initiatives and evaluated these trial results against the NGMN requirements and recommendations.

Working Principle

The NGMN Trial project took into consideration all NGMN candidate technologies. The LTE/SAE trials were driven and executed by the so-called LTE/SAE Trial Initiative (LSTI, The development of 3GPP2 UMB was monitored with limited effort, since none of the NGMN Members was considerably involved in any UMB trials.


LTE/SAE Trial Initiative (LSTI)

The LTE/SAE Trial Initiative was an open initiative driven by vendors and operators founded in May 2007 and successfully concluded its work in January 2011. LSTI joined the leading operators and the key LTE/SAE. For more information visit


The main objectives of LSTI were:


  • Demonstrate 3GPP LTE/SAE capabilities
  • Stimulate development of LTE/SAE ecosystem
  • Promote industrialization of LTE/SAE
  • Promote LTE/SAE as NGMN technology
  • Consider NGMN and 3GPP requirements as input for LSTI tests


LSTI established different work streams to reflect the different stages in the technology development process. The Proof of Concept phase verified the basic LTE/SAE functionality and performance using pre-standard proprietary equipment. LSTI co-ordinated industry-wide interoperability testing of standards compliant equipment from different vendor pairs, stimulating early feedback into the standard. In 2009 LSTI demonstrated LTE capabilities and advantages in near-commercial conditions. Friendly users tested mobile broadband applications, using pre-commercial form factor terminals in several field trials. In January 2011, LSTI concluded its work and presented the outcomes at the Mobile World Congress 2011 (the presentation is available at
Presentation Package of Joint GSMA-NGMN Conference Stream - MWC).

Main Deliverables

Main deliverables of the NGMN Trial project:


  • Field Trial Requirements document (2 releases in 2008),
    Describes test requirements to enable the verification of the NGMN White Paper requirements through field trials, including
    - Trial setup recommendations
    - End-to-end proof point descriptions
    - Reporting recommendations;
  • Concept for NGMN-approved trials;
  • Evaluation reports on proof-of-concept, technical field trials, and friendly customer trials.


In the initial phase of the NGMN Trial activities, a collaboration framework was established defining the informal interface towards LSTI and towards the WiMAX trial activity, as well as legal and confidentiality aspects. Furthermore, the NGMN Field Trial Requirements were finalised.