Synchronization is the coordination of events to operate a system in unison. For example, the conductor of an orchestra keeps the orchestra synchronized or in time. Systems that operate with all parts in synchrony are said to be synchronous or in sync—and those that are not are asynchronous.
Time for precision
2020 will see more applications requiring greater levels of network timing accuracy, and that means the migration to IEEE 1588 Precision Time Protocol (PTP) will accelerate. This is already happening in many verticals with examples in the power utility industry, financial sector, cable networks and in enterprise data centers.
The trend towards TDD will continue but, as we go deeper, we’ll start to see advanced 5G architectures such as network slicing. This enables a single physical infrastructure to be divided into multiple logical virtual networks, enabling a diverse range of services. What it will require is a new type of fronthaul network that uses enhanced common public radio interfaces (eCPRI). PTP and SyncE will be essential here for syncing different elements in the fronthaul network.