EXFO Inc. unveiled SkyRAN, a scalable remote access and monitoring solution for fiber-based fronthaul networks. Developed in collaboration with the largest wireless carriers in North America, SkyRAN provides real-time, on-demand testing and 24/7 monitoring of fiber optic networks and RF spectrum. The SkyRAN solution is currently being showcased at VZTUF-XII in Austin, Texas.

SkyRAN combines the industry's highest resolution RF spectrum analysis over CPRI with the most advanced fiber monitoring capabilities on the market. As SkyRAN reveals RF issues that were previously either undetectable or difficult to identify, mobile network operators (MNO) will have the capacity to proactively identify and resolve RF interference, PIM and fiber-related issues before they could impact subscribers.

In order to continue delivering superior quality of experience, MNOs will need full visibility into their RF spectrum and fiber fronthaul networks. A solution like SkyRAN will become even more critical as the mobile industry begins to transform their networks in preparation for 5G, which will rely on highly dense networks resulting in an increase of RF interference sources.

"For mobile network operators, RF spectrum is one of their most valuable assets and RF interference is one of their worst enemies," said Stéphane Chabot, EXFO's vice president, Test and Measurement. "SkyRAN protects this asset and also generates significant OPEX savings by reducing the need to travel to macro cell sites in remote locations or in high-density centralized-RAN hubs. Instead, technicians can troubleshoot from their desks or get equipped with actionable data through analytics before arriving on-site, if a truck roll is still necessary."