5G FAPI suite continues to evolve to meet industry needs

SCF has updated its 5G FAPI suite, and released a new specification SCF229 5G FAPI Operations, Administration and Maintenance (OAM) Protocol For Inline High-PHY, bringing to Open RAN fuller virtualized support of inline High-PHY implementations in O-RAN Alliance architecture. These latest releases are further indication of the FAPI suite evolving and meeting industry requirements, and it demonstrates SCF’s commitment to consistently updating and expanding the APIs.


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Why join?

SCF is a global membership organization committed to supporting agile, low-cost mobile infrastructure through small cells. Our mission is to make mobile cellular connectivity an accessible resource for organizations of all sizes, and to support the digital transformation of industry, enterprise and communities.

As the mobile ecosystem has evolved, we’ve seen a significant shift from a traditional B2C environment to a B2B and B2C environment, providing potential for new business relationships and opportunities:

  • Technology providers expanding from OEMs, tower and transport providers to also include public and private cloud providers
  • Network providers expanding from MNOs to also include neutral host providers, private network providers and systems integrators
  • Service providers expanding from MNO/MVNOs to also include private network operators
  • Connectivity consumers expanding from individual subscribers to include industry, enterprise, smart cities, guests, employers and IoT

Small cells are the means by which enterprise, industry and communities are joining the mobile economy and finding new ways to create value with mobile connectivity.

SCF’s work program has been developed to support this new connectivity agenda, helping to promote and deliver the opportunities and overcome any barriers.

Why not join us on the journey?

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  3. Submit the completed documents and Membership Services will be in touch

Membership packages

Small Cell Forum membership is open to any legally established corporation, individual firm, partnership, governmental body or international organization supporting the promotion and worldwide deployment of small cell technologies.


From 5G densification to a significant rise in enterprise and in-building deployments, small cells are at the heart of the key trends driving 4G and 5G growth.

Our activities are evolving to reflect the diverse needs of different industries, and so too is our membership.

Neutral hosts, systems integrators, and fiber providers, among others, are joining traditional vendors and operators to cooperate in a rich program of cross-industry work items.

Act now to take a leadership position in an organization driving the digital transformation of industry, enterprise and communities.

Key features

  • Ensure your company’s commercial objectives are reflected in SCF’s agenda.
  • Recommend new initiatives to members based on the Board’s strategic decisions
  • All Full Member benefits
  • Limited positions

2022-23 membership year Executive Board Member fee £17,750 (+VAT)


In the year ahead, SCF will capture requirements and help build confidence in the open, deployable solutions that are emerging from the ecosystem.

With 14 major work items already defined, our focus is on the needs and challenges of three groups:

  • Enterprises or vertical industries
  • Network deployers
  • Technology providers

If your company is to have a significant impact on how mobile networks evolve to support the needs of the many industries in the 5G era, now is the time to join us.

Key features:

  • Insights and customer requirements – access to in-depth market status research, operator surveys, industry group research
  • Stakeholder engagement – collaborate to solve problems and drive the industry forward
  • Promote your commercial agenda – drive the topics most important to your business
  • Best practice – shape industry standards, specifications and solution blueprints for key vertical sectors
  • Industry interaction and endorsement – work with partner organizations
  • Knowledge hub contributor – named contributors promoted as part of document Releases
  • Leadership and credibility – peer-reviewed work through Release documents
  • Global reach – engage with the international ecosystem
  • Influence and increased visibility – get your product/services in front of industry and customers via our enterprise panels
  • Network – potential customers, suppliers, influencers and peers

2022-23 membership year Full Member fee £9,500 (+VAT)


Pre-commercial membership features

  • Independent, pre-commercial organizations
  • Gross revenue in 12-month period prior to application to be, in aggregate, less than $500K USD
  • Certification assessed annually
  • Full Member benefits apply

2022-23 membership year Pre-commercial Member fee £2,000 (+VAT)


Explorer membership features

  • Open to licensed holders of spectrum for mobile services
  • Complimentary 12-month period
  • Attend meetings, contribute to agenda
  • Access to SCF working documents and consumer research data

Contact membership services

If you are interested in becoming a Small Cell Forum member and require further details, please contact our Membership Services team.


Our work program

Below are the areas our members are working on as part of our work program

5G products and components

Small cells are changing. Their form is changing and so are their use cases. To avoid the risk fragmentation, SCF has produced a consensus view and concise definition of the types of 5G small cells and the key characteristics of the different types of commercially viable 5G small cell RAN products over the next five years.

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FAPI specifications

SCF has updated the suite of 5G FAPI specifications which underpin the high-performance low-cost components integral to 5G mobile base stations, whether small cell or macro. FAPI has already been widely adopted in the vast majority of 2G, 3G and 4G system-on-a-chip based small cells and the 5G version is now on its third release.

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FAPI is an interface between the chipset and the software within a small cell. It enables a small cell maker to integrate a SoC from one vendor with upper layer software from another vendor and combine that into one product. nFAPI provides a transport wrapper around the established FAPI PHY APIs to create a fronthaul interface between an S-RU and S-DU. The combination of FAPI and nFAPI is called Open6.

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Private networks and edge

Today, commercial conditions are ripe for enterprises and government to leverage small cell-based private networks for their business-critical and mission-critical connectivity needs. Private networking technology is also a significant opportunity for operators and vendors, enabling new business models, tailored service offerings and access to new verticals.

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Advocacy and policy

SCF’s role extends to more than small cell technology and business cases, we also work with regulators, governments, and organizations. We act as advocates for small cells; on topics such as standardization, regulation, and health.

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