The Common Public Radio Interface (CPRI) is an industry cooperation defining the specification for the key internal interface of radio base stations, between the Radio Equipment Control (REC) and the Radio Equipment (RE).



CPRI is a dominant fronthaul technology in 4G networks

The CPRI specification enables flexible and efficient product differentiation for radio base stations and independent technology evolution for Radio Equipment (RE) and Radio Equipment Control (REC). The companies contributing to the CPRI Specification nowadays include Ericsson, Huawei, NEC, and Nokia.

CPRI allows the use of a distributed architecture where radio base stations, containing the REC, are connected to remote radio heads via lossless fibre links that carry the CPRI data. This architecture reduces costs for service providers because only the remote radio heads containing the RE need to be situated in environmentally challenging locations.

The latest CPRI Specification v7.0 defines line bit rates from 614.4 Mbps to 9.8304 Gbps (1..16X) in the traditional 8b/10b coded mode and 10.1376 Gbps to 24.33024 Gbps (20..48X) rates that utilize the 64b/66b line coding.

For more information of the CPRI specification, see the CPRI website.