This work presents a study concerning the impact of Cloud Radio Access Network and virtualisation techniques in an operator's network, namely in terms of the necessary number of storage and processing nodes, and the links in between, taking increasingly network constraints into account (e.g., latency) as well as deployment ones (e.g., service area, deployment strategy, and expected proliferation of Remote Radio Heads). A model was implemented, which takes the positioning of cell sites available in an urban scenario as input, and computes the number and a possible placement of processing nodes for different constraints an estimate of the number of required blade servers in each node is also computed. Results show that between 2 and 62 Baseband Processing Unit pools are required to cover the whole scenario of Lisbon, depending on the fronthaul delay restriction. An inverse proportionality relation between the number of blade servers and their corresponding capacity has been ascertained.
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